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Air Traffic Monitoring => Aviation Audio Clips => Topic started by: jpwilde on May 05, 2010, 10:33:15 AM

Title: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: jpwilde on May 05, 2010, 10:33:15 AM
Hi, first post, I found this so weird I just had to ask about it.

American 2 heavy is on visual for rwy 22 L, calls in that the localizer is not functioning, tower resets it for him, he calls in that he can't take 22 L, and that if he doesn't get 31 R he's going to declare emergency.

The tower controller says he'll pass it along, and IMMEDIATELY after he says that American 2 heavy declares an emergency, calls breaking off approach and circiling for 31R.  Tower controller tries to issue a turn, but American 2 heavy refuses it and says "I have an emergency, clear the area". (As is his right, I guess.)

By the time it's time for taxi instructions, you can tell theres no love lost between the flight crew and the controller.

I cut this clip down for dead space between transmissions, and cut out one irrelevant exchange with another plane on the ground. I left in tower dealing with clearing the runway and approach after the emergency is called.  Also, the exchange where American 2 heavy says that he needs 31R or he's declaring an emergency, tower says he'll pass it along, and American 2 heavy actually declares an emergency is all unedited.  The three transmissions really were within seconds of one and other. There would have been nothing to cut for time if I'd wanted to.

If anybody has any idea what the subtext to all this is, I'd be very interested.  Is it just that 22 L is too short?  In which case why not get resequenced without the emergency?
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Cap747 on May 05, 2010, 11:17:44 AM
Is this about the same event as someone describes at the listeners forum???

http://www.liveatc.net/forums/listener-forum/anyone-listening-to-jfk-feed-635-p-m/

Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: davolijj on May 05, 2010, 11:21:16 AM
It definitely sounds like there's something missing in that clip.  It sounds like it's kind of out of context.  Was there earlier discussion missing about needing priority or something? 
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: jpwilde on May 05, 2010, 11:28:55 AM
Nothing on tower that I heard.  I was sitting in a parking lot waiting for my wife to get out of work listening to tower for about 45 minutes before it all went down.  I think the first transmission in the clip is his check-in.

I should go back and check approach.  If I have time later today I will.  Unless someone else beats me to it.  First I heard him was at about 2108Z.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: sykocus on May 05, 2010, 11:37:41 AM
I don't know much about JFK ops, but 22L looks like it's on the short side, but 31R is only 1600ft longer. Also it sounds like there was a strong cross wind for 22, but that's where everyone else was going. However if those were the reason's AAL2 could take 22 he should have said something before accepting a visual approach clearance from approach.

What was the nature of emergency that required him to land right away? The only thing I could think of was for fuel. We don't have any record of what he said to approach, but he if he went from fine on the VA to emergence fuel just like that then that was bad planning and horrible communication. Whatever the reason for the emergency AAL2 wasn't doing a good job communicating. Given the sequence of events it sounds like he declared an emergency because the LOC was ots. I know pilots like to have the LOC as a backup when doing a VA, but because it's out is reason to declare alone. So if he had to declare an emergency I don't think some sort of explanation was unreasonable. Either that or we missed a transmission or set of transmissions perhaps with another facility.

The controller was dealing with a lot. It sounds like the ILS went down. The controller had to send a US airways around that was behind AAL2. It also sounds like the controller tried to stop AAL2246 but he stopped past the hold short line and was a problem for AAL2 so the controller had to taxi him clear.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: jpwilde on May 05, 2010, 11:46:04 AM
I just re-listened; I did miss the check-in in the clip.  He checks in on the ILS (!) for 22L.  Tower tells him he's number 2 and clears him to land.  Other than that, nothing special.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Cap747 on May 05, 2010, 12:17:31 PM
Nothing on tower that I heard.  I was sitting in a parking lot waiting for my wife to get out of work listening to tower for about 45 minutes before it all went down.  I think the first transmission in the clip is his check-in.

I should go back and check approach.  If I have time later today I will.  Unless someone else beats me to it.  First I heard him was at about 2108Z.

At the approach frequency I heard him diverting weather twice, but nothing unusual... He was 8 miles out and established on the localizer then normally handed over to tower...
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: aevins on May 05, 2010, 12:18:07 PM
Although weird and JFK normally go hand in hand, this is an odd clip. Looks like they were in the arrival configuration, landing 22L/R and departing 31R, and running SWAP. Aircraft in question looks like it was spun a few times south of LENDY, but no evidence of a missed approach.

http://flightaware.com/live/flight/AAL2/history/20100504/1615Z/KLAX/KJFK
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: N400PW on May 05, 2010, 12:34:50 PM
Sounds right he probably just took off headed for LAX had to turn back and full of fuel needed a runway suitable for a heavy 67 200 I bet.  The pilot did the right thing seems like JFK controllers need the whole runaround of the problem before they make an executive decision.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: iskyfly on May 05, 2010, 12:40:55 PM
Sounds right he probably just took off headed for LAX had to turn back and full of fuel needed a runway suitable for a heavy 67 200 I bet. 
I'll take you up on that bet. $100?
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Anthony Santanastaso on May 05, 2010, 12:45:22 PM
I think it has something to do with the pilots calculating the maximum demonstrated crosswind component of the aircraft and what the airline deamed allowable in their flight manual. The wind was reported to be 320 at 23, gusts 35. Landing on runway 22L would create a quartering tailwind with a crosswind component of between 29-34 kts (factoring the highest wind speed with the gusts). Supposing the plane was a 767-200, from one source I quickly referenced, the approximate maximum demonstrated crosswind component on a runway either wet or dry is 40kts. True the actual conditions were probably less than 40kts, perhaps their flight manual said otherwise? Or, the pilots doing the math rather quickly in their heads decided it was too close for comfort?

I'm sure that the frustration of the new runway configuration with 31L/13R closed played into the pilot's decision.

Just my two cents.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Cap747 on May 05, 2010, 12:46:44 PM
Sounds right he probably just took off headed for LAX had to turn back and full of fuel needed a runway suitable for a heavy 67 200 I bet.  
I'll take you up on that bet. $100?

Me tooooo  :mrgreen:

A flight that originated in KLAX and after 4 hours and 48 minutes landed at KJFK is not a departing airplane...
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: iskyfly on May 05, 2010, 12:49:24 PM
I think it has something to do with the pilots calculating the maximum demonstrated crosswind component of the aircraft and what the airline deamed allowable in their flight manual.
It was fuel related.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: wxman on May 05, 2010, 12:54:07 PM
My first post - I have never heard anything like this ever - I think the controller was due a major explanation - of the just what #!!#$%$^ was going down. Almost sounded like it was political or something because he made a few loops on his decent/approach he had a case of the ass?
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Delta Echo on May 05, 2010, 01:23:33 PM
I just re-listened; I did miss the check-in in the clip.  He checks in on the ILS (!) for 22L.  Tower tells him he's number 2 and clears him to land.  Other than that, nothing special.

He checked in on the Visual!!!  The first words on the recording is "... visual for 22L"
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: jpwilde on May 05, 2010, 01:28:42 PM
For the sake of completeness, here's the clip reedited with his initial check-in prepended.  Like I said, nothing too special, but he does check in on the ILS.  Sorry I cut it off in the first clip--brain fart.

I don't think it changes things much.  It still sounds like it's visual conditions.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: VampyreGTX on May 05, 2010, 02:56:56 PM
Not sure on this one, I truly hope it was an emergency and not a case of ego's.  It resulted in the disruption of other flights, wasted fuel on the planes they forces to go around, etc. 

I highly doubt it was a fuel emergency as they would have declared low fuel which would give them priority and would have ZERO effect on what runway they COULD land at.  They actually burned MORE fuel breaking off the approach and circling to land the other runway.  If the pilot couldn't land on the runway because of crosswind or tailwind component, declaring an emergency is NOT the correct thing to do.  He should have stated 'unable' and requested a change with an explanation as to why he was unable.  I guarantee there will be a thorough investigation of this since the pilot declared an emergency. 
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: davalos08 on May 05, 2010, 03:13:43 PM
Really weird, you don't declare emergency for wind, you just request a better RWY and explain the reasons. Fuel is debatable too, VampyreGTX is right, if the were low on fuel, I think the best course of action would have been to land on the runway you are established at, they surely spent a little more pounds on the circling. In any case is the PIC the ultimate authority of the operation of the aircraft, and ATC has to adjust to that. Lets wait for the investigation
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: iskyfly on May 05, 2010, 03:18:40 PM
Fuel is debatable?

Think...... Avianca
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Planemusic on May 05, 2010, 03:22:55 PM
I just checked the Airport Monitor for JFK (http://www4.passur.com/jfk.html) for 5 PM on May 4.
In replay mode, it shows at least 4 aircraft lined up for 31R.   It appears the tower was in the process of changing
to runway 22L.   AAL2 was the first in line with aircraft starting to lineup behind him.   The monitor shows AAL descended
to 600 ft and broke off the approach just about over the belt parkway.  He then turned to a heading of 180.
You can then see the following aircraft climbing on the runway heading (220).   
Just after crossing the centerline of RW 32R,  AAL2 entered a sharp left 220 degree turn while climbing to 1300ft to line up with 32R.
I too am baffled as to why an emergency was declared.   If the wind was an issue he should have said so. 

Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: VampyreGTX on May 05, 2010, 03:24:45 PM
Yes, even though the PIC is the ultimate authority in the operation of the aircraft, the handling of this emergency by the pilot is definitely NOT professional, IMHO.  The pilot declared an emergency, which he has a right to do if there truly was an emergency.  Per the FAA and review of the FAR's and AIM, the pilot should then wait for an amendend clearance from ATC unless the emergency requires immediate and continued deviation from the FAR's.  It doesn't sound like it was a control issue (entered a turn to do a circle to land at another runway), engine issue (as it doesn't sound like any issues in doing a circle to land which would have required multiple power adjustments), etc.  The controller acknowledged the emergency and altered the clearance, instructing the pilot to fly runway heading so that he could most likely get the pilot down with minimal disruption to other airport operations.  Instead, he turned on his own, causing ATC to scramble to get other planes out of the way, sending other pilots scrambling to do go-arounds and new approaches, etc.  In my opinion, as a pilot myself, the pilot of AA0002 in this case was out of line.  If the emergency was a true emergency, I'm SURE this would be all over the news by now.

When an emergency is declared in the terminal area, the tower is supposed to log the details, tapes, etc. and report it to the FSDO.  This doesn't always happen, but I can guarantee this incident will definitely be reported by the tower to the FSDO based solely on the tone and animosity that was developing between the controller and the pilot.  I wonder if we'll ever get the details.  
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Cap747 on May 05, 2010, 03:39:58 PM
Also after reviewing the radar images, they just followed the JBU


They must have seen something like this...
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: VampyreGTX on May 05, 2010, 03:55:20 PM
Okay, found AA2 heavy on KJFK Approach (Final) frequency.  No problems or emergency concerns while on Approach.  I've attached the file.  I'll see if I can find the comm's from the other approach frequency's leading to to KJFK Final. 

So far, no mention of low fuel, or any other kind of emergency up until the little catfight on Tower.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: jpwilde on May 05, 2010, 04:07:26 PM
Adding to the weirdness, I think I hear both pilots talking on the radio for AA2 at the same time at one point.  Right after tower gives them heading 180, it sounds like person B comes on and says something-- "you don't under[stand]..." maybe, and person A steps on him and forcefully declares that they're landing now.  (It starts at about 1:34 in the second, amended clip above.)

I think I hear fear in person B's voice.  Whether it's the fear of a first officer who's career is flashing before his eyes after his captain gets in a fight with ATC... or something else... I don't know...

After watching the radar, I can't imagine what clearance they were hoping for.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Cap747 on May 05, 2010, 04:13:01 PM
it sounds like person B comes on and says something-- "you don't under[stand]..." maybe, and person A steps on him and forcefully declares that they're landing now.  (It starts at about 1:34 in the second, amended clip above.)

I think I hear fear in person B's voice.  Whether it's the fear of a first officer who's career is flashing before his eyes after his captain gets in a fight with ATC... or something else... I don't know...

Don't get too confused, these clips are edited to the parts involving AA2H only.. there is some time in between the transmissions..

The first two messages are about avoiding weather, 10 degrees left and the second he say's 5 or 10 to the right..I mean to the left..

don't mix this up...
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: VampyreGTX on May 05, 2010, 04:14:49 PM
Capt, he's talking about the second clip in this thread, the top of the second page, not my clip from approach where you hear the requests for deviation due to cloud buiildup.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Cap747 on May 05, 2010, 04:25:06 PM
Capt, he's talking about the second clip in this thread, the top of the second page, not my clip from approach where you hear the requests for deviation due to cloud buiildup.

Yup, I could only hear it in slow motion....
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: davalos08 on May 05, 2010, 04:29:39 PM
is really a thinker, they communicated really bad. Tower should have asked them what was the nature of the emergency
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: VampyreGTX on May 05, 2010, 04:32:35 PM
Granted, it's all monday morning quarterbacking; however, I think the tower knew it was a BS emergency declaration.  They never bother to ask the nature of the emergency, never ask if they require assitsance/equipment, or obtain souls or fuel on board. There are plenty of breaks in the transmissions that they would have had time to inquire and go through the proper emergency procedures. 

:P Too bad we can't hear the CVR..... :D
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: klkm on May 05, 2010, 04:35:51 PM
This is truly an odd thing the pilot did.  I have had those conditional emergency declarations before, especially with americans.  I work in a center so it is usually a request to deviate for weather, and I cannot clear them to due to traffic, they will typically say "we need the deviation or we are declaring an emergency", I am more then willing to work with them, and I understand they cannot go through the weather.  I try to provide the safest way to deviate given the traffic, and let them declare the emergency or workout something else so they can safely do it without breaking separation standards.  

This pilot though was just out of line, in my opinion.  He told the controller he couldn't land on 22L, then with no reason what so ever just came right back with "and if you can't get me 31R I am declaring an emergency".  Now the controller takes it as I would, and says ok i will work that out.  He likely then hits the line to the tracon, and is coordinating the AAL go around, the new runway request, and so forth as the pilot is now breaking off and doing his own thing.  The pilot put his flight in great danger by just doing whatever he felt in a very busy terminal environment.  He breaks off the approach, and sets up on final for an active departure runway, with an aircraft ON that runway, and with traffic setup to land on an intersecting runway!    

I am sure if you follow the ground chatter after that, there is a phone number to the tower thrown out there, and hopefully the pilot has a better explanation then the nothing he gave at the time of the incident.  I would hope the explanation is worthy of his actions.  There very well could have been a declaration of low fuel while he was in the holding pattern.  The tower would/should have known about this from approach, and likely would have done everything they could have to circle him back to 31R as quickly as possible.  I highly doubt the fuel situation was so critical that some vectors back to the runway would have them out of fuel, if that is the case they should have diverted in the holding pattern.  Declaring a fuel emergency once they realized they were not going to make it on their first approach, would have saved a lot of headaches, the tower would have understood right away, started to clear the area and get things set up.  Instead the pilot just started to do his own approach....I know someone at the tower maybe I will see if they have any insight.  
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: glencar on May 05, 2010, 04:38:58 PM
Okay, found AA2 heavy on KJFK Approach (Final) frequency.  No problems or emergency concerns while on Approach.  I've attached the file.  I'll see if I can find the comm's from the other approach frequency's leading to to KJFK Final. 

So far, no mention of low fuel, or any other kind of emergency up until the little catfight on Tower.

Please, more approach clips! The current 31L outage has led to some odd landing runway configurations.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: VampyreGTX on May 05, 2010, 05:18:21 PM
Couldn't find the callsign on any of the other two aprpoaches archived on here.  I'm trying to listen to the ground to find them on there see if anything transpired after the landing.  

There was some talk on one of the approaches about a 20 minute hold or so for incoming planes due to switching of the landing runways.  That was just prior to AAL2 coming up on KJFK Approach Final.

A 20 minute hold 'should' not have resulted in a low fuel declaration or emergency.  Talk about a head scratching incident.  

***EDIT - I think I may have pulled the wrong times for the approach clips, I'll relisten to those tonight.  I've heard some background chatter on Ground of a controller, with a raised voice, saying 'no... he didn't tell me a thing!'  I'm assuming that was Tower talking about AA2 to the ground guys.  So far, haven't heard them on ground yet.  Probably won't be able to get back to my search till later tonight.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: SirIsaac787 on May 05, 2010, 05:54:23 PM
Granted, it's all monday morning quarterbacking; however, I think the tower knew it was a BS emergency declaration.  They never bother to ask the nature of the emergency, never ask if they require assitsance/equipment, or obtain souls or fuel on board. There are plenty of breaks in the transmissions that they would have had time to inquire and go through the proper emergency procedures. 

:P Too bad we can't hear the CVR..... :D

Yeah, seriously.  I wish the ATC requested the reason for the emergency from the pilot.  Winds or a malfunctioning ILS is not reason for an emergency.  If anything, you say you cannot accept that runway and get re-sequenced in.

Based off of what we have, just seems like a stupid move by the pilot.  That is a huge safety issue.  And the controller seemed to agree with us that the emergency was BS.  The pilot took control of the situation when he needed to let the tower controller accommodate him.  What he did was a safety risk.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: davalos08 on May 05, 2010, 05:55:17 PM
what I don't like is how the pilot says it "if we don't get 31R, Im declaring an emergency", sounds like a threat.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: jedgar on May 05, 2010, 06:45:00 PM
The pilot did have a real sense of urgency in his voice though.. to my mind, he didn't sound like he was just being a dick.. sounded like he needed to land asap.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Cap747 on May 05, 2010, 06:51:59 PM
Please, more approach clips! The current 31L outage has led to some odd landing runway configurations.

In my country if one pilot finds a new thing right thereafter they all want to do it... Not sure though  :-D
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: iskyfly on May 05, 2010, 07:07:33 PM
Good god all these conspiracy theories as to what happened puts X-Files to shame.

I suggest everyone read the FAR's on fuel reserves as it pertains to this operation.

There is no "investigation" because there was no incident or accident.
And yes, those two words are defined by the FAA. Read up on that as well.

The minute a PIC decision to declare is second guessed by any authority, be it airline management or a governing body, safety will be compromised. Nobody wants that.

If this was indeed the mountain you are all making this out to be it would have made the news by now. You can also bet that by now the unions would be putting their spin on things.

Emergencies are just like go-arounds. To the lay person and / or the pax on the flight it is "a a near total airdisaster." To the crew and controllers it is another day at the office.

Move on.



Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: robertvo on May 05, 2010, 07:13:48 PM
I remember there were strong wind gusts around that time in NYC.
It seems like everything was fine untill he was about to land and the tower reports gusts to 35kt.
Then you can hear the distress in the pilot's vioce and maybe little fear.

It looks like the wind gusts getting from bad to worse was the reason.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: davolijj on May 05, 2010, 07:22:23 PM
Good god all these conspiracy theories as to what happened puts X-Files to shame.

I suggest everyone read the FAR's on fuel reserves as it pertains to this operation.

There is no "investigation" because there was no incident or accident.
And yes, those two words are defined by the FAA. Read up on that as well.

The minute a PIC decision to declare is second guessed by any authority, be it airline management or a governing body, safety will be compromised. Nobody wants that.

If this was indeed the mountain you are all making this out to be it would have made the news by now. You can also bet that by now the unions would be putting their spin on things.

Emergencies are just like go-arounds. To the lay person and / or the pax on the flight it is "a a near total airdisaster." To the crew and controllers it is another day at the office.

Move on.

I'm afraid I have to disagree here.  Declaration of an emergency IS a big deal and thousands of dollars in fuel were wasted by other system users because AAL2 didn't want to land on 22L. 

Also how can the controllers provide the best possible service, including coordinating with rescue or security personnel, if the pilot doesn't make clear the nature of the emergency or his desires?
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: iskyfly on May 05, 2010, 08:02:20 PM

I'm afraid I have to disagree here.  Declaration of an emergency IS a big deal
No, not always.

Quote
and thousands of dollars in fuel were wasted by other system users because AAL2 didn't want to land on 22L.
Cost of fuel is never a deterrent for declaring. NEVER.

Quote
Also how can the controllers provide the best possible service, including coordinating with rescue or security personnel, if the pilot doesn't make clear the nature of the emergency or his desires?
there is no such definition by which controllers are evaluated.
Positive separation was maintained and pertinent information was conveyed. If the controller or the pilot needed something more it would have been requested. ie- Hudson ditching, pilot- "whats there to our right?"
controller - "what do you need to land?"
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: glencar on May 05, 2010, 08:34:53 PM
For those who live in NYC area, Channel 7 (WABC) will be doing a story on this event. They're not fair & balanced or very competent but it still might eb fun to watch...
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: iskyfly on May 05, 2010, 08:42:02 PM
For those who live in NYC area, Channel 7 (WABC) will be doing a story on this event. They're not fair & balanced or very competent but it still might eb fun to watch...
Are you sure this isn't about the AA flight that had an engine failure and landed at Newark today?
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: glencar on May 05, 2010, 08:56:20 PM
Nah, I think someone there reads this site. It sounded like someone complaining about the wind. We deal with emergencies every day - this one was different.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Zen_Approach on May 05, 2010, 09:12:56 PM

Emergencies are just like go-arounds. To the lay person and / or the pax on the flight it is "a a near total airdisaster." To the crew and controllers it is another day at the office.

Move on.


To suggest that an emergency and a go-around is equivalent is wrong. Declaring emergency means that there is an immediate and serious safety concern and is always taken seriously (even if they aren't that uncommon). Also, to suggest that this was a routine emergency is false, this type of thing does not happen every day where a pilot seemingly inexplicably declares emergency and starts flying his own approach on a different runway in very congested airspace.


This recording really piqued my curiosity, hopefully we find out what the story was here
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: iskyfly on May 05, 2010, 09:31:32 PM


This recording really piqued my curiosity, hopefully we find out what the story was here
what has piqued my curiosity is your forum name and that this is your first post here.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: dmountain on May 05, 2010, 09:56:02 PM
"what has piqued my curiosity is your forum name and that this is your first post here."

That it's his first post suggests that this is indeed an intrinsically interesting and curious event. It's certainly the reason why this is my first post. Please understand that just because you don't find something interesting, it doesn't mean everyone else ought not find it interesting.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: SASD209 on May 05, 2010, 10:13:46 PM
Well, everybody needs a first post at some point.....this IS a discussion forum, no?
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: davolijj on May 05, 2010, 10:58:41 PM
No, not always.

I see, we have yet another, "the pilot has final authority under part 91.3 blah blah blah" member here.  Guess what, we've heard it all before.  It is a big deal - whether you think so or not, and I can gaurantee you questions are being asked.  If you're implying it's okay even if the pilot declared an emergency simply because he didn't like his runway assignment, then again you're wrong.  And let me save you the trouble of quoting the regs:

Quote from: FAR Title 14 Part 91.3
§ 91.3   Responsibility and authority of the pilot in command.

(a) The pilot in command of an aircraft is directly responsible for, and is the final authority as to, the operation of that aircraft.

(b) In an in-flight emergency requiring immediate action, the pilot in command may deviate from any rule of this part to the extent required to meet that emergency.

(c) Each pilot in command who deviates from a rule under paragraph (b) of this section shall, upon the request of the Administrator, send a written report of that deviation to the Administrator.

If pilots start using emergencies gratuitously we'll soon be in a sad state of affairs.

Cost of fuel is never a deterrent for declaring. NEVER.
Nor should it be.  But again, if the emergency status was misused here then AAL should pay for every aircraft that went around or had to spin as a result.  Personally I don't think it'll play out this way - I like to give pilots the benefit of the doubt.  There has to be more to the story than meets the eye.

there is no such definition by which controllers are evaluated.
Positive separation was maintained and pertinent information was conveyed. If the controller or the pilot needed something more it would have been requested. ie- Hudson ditching, pilot- "whats there to our right?"
controller - "what do you need to land?"

Obviously you've never read Don Brown's AvWeb series  "Say Again."
http://www.avweb.com/news/sayagain/182651-1.html
I don't know how many of those articles are still available and it really is too bad, they're all great reads.  Where amateurs see "pertinent information [being] conveyed," experts see a serious breakdown in communication.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: SASD209 on May 05, 2010, 11:01:24 PM
Wow, thats a heck of an intro on news channel 7 haha
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: VampyreGTX on May 06, 2010, 12:34:45 AM
iskyfly, where are you getting that this was a fuel emergency?  You keep pointing to the fact that it was a fuel emergency, but no where is there ANY point where the pilot declares minimum fuel or a fuel emergency.  The attitude of the pilot is what is at issue in my opinion.  If you have a source for this, please provide it. 

As for declaring an emergency not being declared an incident, as noted in the FAR's above, it IS an incident.  It's also known that the tower has to log the incident and report it to the FSDO.  Read the following: 

http://www.avweb.com/news/system/183214-1.html

Excerpt:
"A real emergency, whether initiated by the pilot or a controller, is classified as an "incident" and, at minimum, information on the event will be recorded in the radar or tower facility daily log. Later on, written reports may be required but they're not done routinely by towers and radar facilities.

Other examples of incidents include flight assists, controller operational errors and pilot deviations.

Shortly after the incident is logged, the local manager phones in a report to the regional operations center which then notifies the FSDO who's responsible for the area where the emergency occurred. However, here too there appears to be latitude. Some of the entries we reviewed didn't show up in the FSDO records, suggesting the FSDO wasn't notified or didn't deem the entry worth officially recording.

FSDO's often have an inspector on call 24 hours a day. Emergencies they learn about from the operations center are always followed up with some kind of investigation, sometimes immediately, sometimes within a few days but, by law, within six months. An "investigation" may be as simple as a phone call to the tower to make sure the aircraft landed safely or it could—and often does— involve a visit by the inspector, a ramp check of the aircraft and some questions for the pilot.

If everything is in order, most emergencies (at least for non-commercial aircraft) appear to end there. There's paperwork for the FSDO (an incident report) but usually none for the pilot and certificate action of any kind is unusual. The incident report will be kept on file by the FSDO and eventually sent to Oklahoma City, where it will become part of the the pilot's permanent record.

Emergencies involving air carriers or air taxi operations get more scrutiny. In fact, air traffic managers are specifically directed to notify their bosses and FAA headquarters if an emergency involves an air carrier, a commuter or an air taxi. And like any bureaucracy worth its organizational chart, the FAA protects its backside against bad publicity. Managers are supposed to notify headquarters if the aircraft is carrying a member of congress or if the emergency is likely to attract news media attention.

Oddly enough, the air traffic logs and FSDO records don't always make a distinction as to whether an incident was an emergency or not. From our review of one facility's daily logs (we looked at six months worth of Bradley International Airport's radar and tower logs) it was often hard to tell how the incidents were classified. Some log entries plainly said "emergency declared" while others just noted what had occurred and how it was resolved.

Taken together, all these regs and procedures mean that the actual declaration of an emergency or the provision of priority service really doesn't have much bearing on whether an incident will be investigated. FSDO's routinely follow up on the incidents they learn about from tower and radar managers. They often don't know or even care if an actual emergency was declared."
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: VampyreGTX on May 06, 2010, 12:37:48 AM
Story is up on ABC 7 new york:

http://abclocal.go.com/wabc/story?section=news/investigators&id=7425425

The pilot declared the emergency due to the crosswind component.  This is directly from the head of the JFK controller's union.  
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: jpwilde on May 06, 2010, 12:42:13 AM

I'm afraid I have to disagree here.  Declaration of an emergency IS a big deal
No, not always.



I have to disagree with the sentiment of that, at least.  I'm not a pro, but I like to get my feet off the ground a fair bit, and I consider myself a student of the system.

First, I don't think anybody is questioning the decision to declare an emergency in and of itself. We have no evidence one way or another whether it was necessary, so give the crew the benefit of the doubt.  If he had declared an emergency and landed normally, or gone around as instructed, we wouldn't be talking about this.  The emergency, by itself isn't what's so questionable about this.

It's the deviation from the controllers instructions that's so odd.  Declaring an emergency kicks you to the front of the line, nothing more.  It doesn't automatically bestow the right to do whatever you want, safety be damned.  You have the same right to deviate under an emergency as you do normally: only when immediate action is required for the safety of the flight.  One out of four engines running rough enough that you want to turn around might be a good reason to declare an emergency, but it's a terrible reason to fly within 50 feet of six other planes at 600 kts on your way back, for example.

And that's where we have enough evidence to at least begin to monday-morning-quarterback this.  Looking at the radar track, listening to tower race to clear the runway, it's almost impossible to imagine a scenario where this course of action increased the safety of the flight in any way.   Worse, it put two other flights by my count at least somewhat at risk.  He had a runway right in front of him and enough power/control to climb 1200 ft. and make a steep turn.  The closest thing to an explanation I can imagine would be low fuel. But even if you have 5 minutes fuel remaining (which would be a huge screw up by itself), just tell the controller and he'll get you down in 4 on the runway of your choice, or die trying, all while making sure you don't hit anybody.

That's my two cents after mulling it over for a day, anyway.  Like I said, I'm no pro.

Update: Just read the ABC story.  They miss the point, IMO.  An emergency may have been (but probably wasn't) necessary.  The immediate and radical deviation was not.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: BrianCLT on May 06, 2010, 01:34:37 AM
Story is up on ABC 7 new york:

http://abclocal.go.com/wabc/story?section=news/investigators&id=7425425

The pilot declared the emergency due to the crosswind component.  This is directly from the head of the JFK controller's union.  

What I don't understand is why he didn't just declare missed and get re sequenced. Why did he need to land at that moment. He didn't say anything about low fuel.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: bbatsell on May 06, 2010, 01:56:16 AM
Story is up on ABC 7 new york:

http://abclocal.go.com/wabc/story?section=news/investigators&id=7425425

The pilot declared the emergency due to the crosswind component.  This is directly from the head of the JFK controller's union.  

What I don't understand is why he didn't just declare missed and get re sequenced. Why did he need to land at that moment. He didn't say anything about low fuel.
The article does say at the end that he was low on fuel, though it's a mystery to me why he didn't declare it if he really was.  I found it interesting that it's the controllers' union that's making a fuss about JFK and doing its best to portray the captain in a favorable light.

jpwilde, your post is pretty much exactly how I feel about the incident.  Well said.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: SASD209 on May 06, 2010, 01:58:12 AM
Couldn't something simple as "the crosswind component is above our allowed maximums; please head us for the 31R visual landing" have been said? I know people are speculating about a minimum fuel situation, but I've not heard a single word to that effect. Even so, I'm quite sure had fuel AND the crosswind been an issue, the controllers would have given him the 31R approach....I mean, the controllers are professionals after all!!!  
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: rekno13 on May 06, 2010, 02:30:27 AM
Sigh, news coverage, always making controllers look bad. They played the clip with the pilot saying I've declared 3 times, but not the clip where the controller did an excellent job handling all the traffic. The phrasing of "if you don't get us to 31R, we're going to declare emergency" is weird. I see how it can be misunderstood by the controller. Glad everyone was safe.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: SASD209 on May 06, 2010, 02:50:42 AM
Well, I think anyone who heard the whole thing will see how the controller faced a really strange situation and then RAPIDLY re-routed the planes and cleared the area for AA2's landing. Really, I don't blame the controller for being confused for a very short time in the beginning...the AA2 pilot gave him NOTHING to go on and basically demanded his course of action. That cannot be an easy thing to adjust to, esp with no reason given and nothing to work with. I'm just glad the A/C landed safely. I truly hope the NTSB and the FAA can review this situation and perhaps next time it can be handled by both parties in a better manner.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: tyketto on May 06, 2010, 03:02:18 AM
Story is up on ABC 7 new york:

http://abclocal.go.com/wabc/story?section=news/investigators&id=7425425

The pilot declared the emergency due to the crosswind component.  This is directly from the head of the JFK controller's union.  

Well.. if the controller needs some evidence to back him on the pilot's declaration being wrong..

Something similar happened at KLAS today. Wind shear alerts all day (winds were around the 22022G47 range, with gains/losses up to 20kts on final). FDX526 ended up getting the visual to 25L, called in about 10 miles out, concerned about the gains and crosswind component on final. Tower circled them to 19L. No cancelled approach clearance, just a circle north of the field, report the field in sight, reduce to final approach speed to follow traffic, and contact the other tower. No emergency declared.

Just based on that alone, AAL2 was in serious error.

BL.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Cap747 on May 06, 2010, 05:52:08 AM
Well, I think anyone who heard the whole thing will see how the controller faced a really strange situation and then RAPIDLY re-routed the planes and cleared the area for AA2's landing. Really, I don't blame the controller for being confused for a very short time in the beginning...the AA2 pilot gave him NOTHING to go on and basically demanded his course of action. That cannot be an easy thing to adjust to, esp with no reason given and nothing to work with. I'm just glad the A/C landed safely. I truly hope the NTSB and the FAA can review this situation and perhaps next time it can be handled by both parties in a better manner.

The controller was lucky, he only had to re-route  one airplane according to the airport monitor, but that flight (AWE12) had to go-around for 20 mins because of this...to line up in sequence again....
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: jrmyl on May 06, 2010, 06:13:30 AM
Story is up on ABC 7 new york:

http://abclocal.go.com/wabc/story?section=news/investigators&id=7425425

The pilot declared the emergency due to the crosswind component.  This is directly from the head of the JFK controller's union.  

Well.. if the controller needs some evidence to back him on the pilot's declaration being wrong..

Something similar happened at KLAS today. Wind shear alerts all day (winds were around the 22022G47 range, with gains/losses up to 20kts on final). FDX526 ended up getting the visual to 25L, called in about 10 miles out, concerned about the gains and crosswind component on final. Tower circled them to 19L. No cancelled approach clearance, just a circle north of the field, report the field in sight, reduce to final approach speed to follow traffic, and contact the other tower. No emergency declared.

Just based on that alone, AAL2 was in serious error.

BL.


I would say that is a completely different situation.  That wind direction would have been a 30 degree x-wind on either of those runways.  Plus, the last 4 times I've flown into LAS I have been cleared for the visual to 25L and then circled north for the landing on 19L.  It is a completely normal situation that happens quite often due to terrain and airspace considerations.

Now as to whether AA2 was in error, that is something that we on here have no way of knowing what all was going on inside the cockpit.  We don't know what his exact fuel situation was.  All we do know is that the wind was right at the limits or exceeding it with the gusts.  Let the FAA decide if he was in error or not.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: VampyreGTX on May 06, 2010, 09:22:02 AM

Now as to whether AA2 was in error, that is something that we on here have no way of knowing what all was going on inside the cockpit.  We don't know what his exact fuel situation was.  All we do know is that the wind was right at the limits or exceeding it with the gusts.  Let the FAA decide if he was in error or not.


Actually, being a pilot myself, I can see this being a pilot error.  A crosswind component exceeding your limits in itself  is not an emergency.  I've experienced it myself a few times and never declared an emergency.  I was cleared for a visual approach, as we descended, I could tell the fight to keep the center line was a lot more difficult than expected.  A wind check call proved that the gusts were exceeding the crosswind component max so I just contacted tower stating 'unable visual 9L, crosswinds exceed limits.'  I was immediately brought back to pattern altitude and brought around for a runway more in line with the winds. 

I don't understand how the pilot got himself into a low fuel situation.  If he was that seriously low on fuel there was some serious mis calculation.  Listening to approach, it appears that the holds the planes were in were roughly 20 minutes prior to landing.  Yet, minimum fuel reserve requirements mean that there should be enough fuel on board, after reaching the destination to climb back up to cruise altitude, fly to the alternate airport, descend and land, and THEN an additional 45 minutes of fuel on top of that.  Am I missing something here?  Add that up and you're talking well in excess of an hour of extra fuel, so add in the 20 minuted hold, you still have more than 40 minutes. 

Anyway, this has led to some interesting discussions, and even though it's seems to get a tad heated at times, at least it's stayed civil. Let's keep the discussion going.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Cap747 on May 06, 2010, 10:13:48 AM
"Demonstrated wind components" mean: actual weather Boeing's test pilots went through during their test phases?

It's their perfect storm they went trough?

But does this mean the maximum an airplane can handle? (I personally don't think so, but who knows)
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: iskyfly on May 06, 2010, 10:30:22 AM
"Demonstrated wind components" mean: actual weather Boeing's test pilots went through during their test phases?

It's their perfect storm they went trough?

But does this mean the maximum an airplane can handle? (I personally don't think so, but who knows)

The AFM "demonstrated" value is simply the highest crosswind conditions that were encountered during the airplane flight test program. The recommended crosswind limits were determined by analysis and piloted simulator evaluation, not by flight test.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: VampyreGTX on May 06, 2010, 10:52:14 AM
"Demonstrated wind components" mean: actual weather Boeing's test pilots went through during their test phases?

It's their perfect storm they went trough?

But does this mean the maximum an airplane can handle? (I personally don't think so, but who knows)


No, it's not the maximum a plane can handle, I've known one person (I wouldn't do it) who brought in a C-172 in 32 knot crosswinds.... it was a interesting landing to see from the ground, can't imagine what it was like in the plane.  :P  The crosswind is only the 'demonstrated' value.  Airlines probably have their own limits as well.  In larger, low wing planes, pushing it too much and you risk scraping the engines when adjusting for a strong crosswind (just look at some of the KaiTak videos and pictures of crosswind landings.)
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: davalos08 on May 06, 2010, 11:07:54 AM
Of course there was no accident or incident, but because an emergency was declared ATC of this particular airport has the right to request a report, I'm very positive ATC will ask for one, to clarify things.

Good god all these conspiracy theories as to what happened puts X-Files to shame.

I suggest everyone read the FAR's on fuel reserves as it pertains to this operation.

There is no "investigation" because there was no incident or accident.
And yes, those two words are defined by the FAA. Read up on that as well.

The minute a PIC decision to declare is second guessed by any authority, be it airline management or a governing body, safety will be compromised. Nobody wants that.

If this was indeed the mountain you are all making this out to be it would have made the news by now. You can also bet that by now the unions would be putting their spin on things.

Emergencies are just like go-arounds. To the lay person and / or the pax on the flight it is "a a near total airdisaster." To the crew and controllers it is another day at the office.

Move on.




Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Flipr1Arrival on May 06, 2010, 11:11:57 AM
Just registered and this is my first post.

I've read probably a thousand threads on accidents and incidents on public boards and typically the majority of the posts tend to be worthless conjecture by those who, although well meaning and interested in the subject, really don't have a clue to what really happened, nor have any valuable information to add on the subject.

This thread, 5 pages so far, contains the most uninformed useless and condescending drivel that I have ever read going back as far as the Compuserve BBS boards 15 years ago. While I appreciate the aviation interest and the few posters who have inquired as to what happened, most have ended up going farther by condemming the crews actions based on an internet tape.

To those who have honestly asked questions with genuine interest, my apologies, my post does not apply to you.

Thank you









Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: tarheels167 on May 06, 2010, 11:17:04 AM
Well, I think anyone who heard the whole thing will see how the controller faced a really strange situation and then RAPIDLY re-routed the planes and cleared the area for AA2's landing. Really, I don't blame the controller for being confused for a very short time in the beginning...the AA2 pilot gave him NOTHING to go on and basically demanded his course of action. That cannot be an easy thing to adjust to, esp with no reason given and nothing to work with. I'm just glad the A/C landed safely. I truly hope the NTSB and the FAA can review this situation and perhaps next time it can be handled by both parties in a better manner.

The controller was lucky, he only had to re-route  one airplane according to the airport monitor, but that flight (AWE12) had to go-around for 20 mins because of this...to line up in sequence again....

Hi all. First post and I'll add the disclaimer that I'm just an air travel-loving civilian with no flight/ATC experience.

However, I was on AWE12 sitting on the left side of the aircraft. It was pretty weird to watch a 767 make an arching turn directly into our flight path. Obviously by that point we'd been held at 2000 with approach clearance cancelled, but as a passenger, it was certainly a bit unnerving. The captain came on just after we climbed to 3000 and explained that AA2 had declared emergency and thus we had to go around, but you could tell he wasn't sure why.

20 minutes later we slammed down onto 22L. Captain apologized for the landing and blamed it on the cross wind. All in all, an exciting end to a boring flight!

Sounds like the controllers did a great job, particularly with AA2243 already across the hold bars on 31R.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: iskyfly on May 06, 2010, 11:40:28 AM
Quote

Like pilots and controllers, FSDO inspectors have rules to live by and technically, an inspector is derelict if he or she ignores a known violation of the FARs. Yet, despite the FAA's recent reputation for zero-tolerance enforcement, FSDO inspectors do have some latitude. One inspector told us that declaring an emergency isn't an "automatic, spring-loaded enforcement action" but he admitted that enforcement pickiness is inspector-specific. "If I really want to find a way to bust a pilot, I can do it," said another, "but what's the point? I'd much rather see compliance than suspend the guy's ticket."


Kinder enforcement policies

In the strict enforcement climate of the 1980s, inspectors were required by policy to recommend certificate action for certain violations. A TCA bust, for example, brought a mandatory 60-day suspension.

 
Declaring an emergency is in itself not a violation but pilots have always worried, whether justifiably or not, that the resulting investigation would turn up something that would be.

These days, however, FSDO inspectors are being encouraged to achieve compliance at the lowest levels (on the ramp, if possible) without resorting to legal action.

An "investigation" may be as simple as a phone call to the tower to make sure the aircraft landed safely.

To do this, they've been given a wider range of administrative and remedial tools, including the option of writing warning letters for violations or requiring a pilot to seek additional training in lieu of certificate action. Furthermore, the FAA amended its enforcement and compliance orders in 1990 to state that "declaring an emergency in an appropriate situation is evidence of good judgment and attitude. Such evidence is to be considered in setting enforcement penalties which might result from a violation attendant to such a declaration."

Declaring an emergency has never exposed pilots to undue risk of enforcement action and now, if anything, doing so may credit for good judgement. And since a potential emergency will probably be investigated anway, you might as well declare it and get all the help that's available.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: VampyreGTX on May 06, 2010, 12:21:17 PM
Just registered and this is my first post.

I've read probably a thousand threads on accidents and incidents on public boards and typically the majority of the posts tend to be worthless conjecture by those who, although well meaning and interested in the subject, really don't have a clue to what really happened, nor have any valuable information to add on the subject.

This thread, 5 pages so far, contains the most uninformed useless and condescending drivel that I have ever read going back as far as the Compuserve BBS boards 15 years ago. While I appreciate the aviation interest and the few posters who have inquired as to what happened, most have ended up going farther by condemming the crews actions based on an internet tape.

To those who have honestly asked questions with genuine interest, my apologies, my post does not apply to you.

Thank you


Flipr.... right after I post that this thread has been kept civil, you post this... thanks!  :roll: :x

Why don't you explain what parts you consider worthless drivel or provide your expertise to the rest of us uninformed souls?  I'm not decrying the pilot's authority to declare an emergency, but the pilot's AND controller's attitudes in the unraveling of this incident.  There was no need for the tone, anger and hostility that was heard in the tapes.  I've been raised and trained to be professional at all times in my job and I always ensure that I behave as a professional, without resorting to raising my voice and getting flustered.  If that was me behind the controls, depending on the situation, I know that I would not have acted in that manner, especially over a radio that is monitored by the public, even passengers on some airlines.  My main concern here is with the attitudes exhibited by the crews involved.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: glencar on May 06, 2010, 01:10:55 PM
The report on WABC was all in favor of what the crew did. I wasn't working yet that night; indeed, I landed at LGA around the same time. We have had many days where the crosswinds have been too severe (IMO) and yet we stayed with 22's. A few pilots have requested & gotten 31R but I am surprised more don't ask.

As for the newbie/dolt who posted above: Many of us here are controllers and/or pilots. Thanks for your "input"!
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: rekno13 on May 06, 2010, 03:11:48 PM
Just registered and this is my first post.

I've read probably a thousand threads on accidents and incidents on public boards and typically the majority of the posts tend to be worthless conjecture by those who, although well meaning and interested in the subject, really don't have a clue to what really happened, nor have any valuable information to add on the subject.

This thread, 5 pages so far, contains the most uninformed useless and condescending drivel that I have ever read going back as far as the Compuserve BBS boards 15 years ago. While I appreciate the aviation interest and the few posters who have inquired as to what happened, most have ended up going farther by condemming the crews actions based on an internet tape.

To those who have honestly asked questions with genuine interest, my apologies, my post does not apply to you.

Thank you
And you're just adding to it by going completely off topic. You can ignore the posts that add nothing to the conversation, just scroll past them. (And now I'm going off topic!)



Hi all. First post and I'll add the disclaimer that I'm just an air travel-loving civilian with no flight/ATC experience.

However, I was on AWE12 sitting on the left side of the aircraft. It was pretty weird to watch a 767 make an arching turn directly into our flight path. Obviously by that point we'd been held at 2000 with approach clearance cancelled, but as a passenger, it was certainly a bit unnerving. The captain came on just after we climbed to 3000 and explained that AA2 had declared emergency and thus we had to go around, but you could tell he wasn't sure why.

20 minutes later we slammed down onto 22L. Captain apologized for the landing and blamed it on the cross wind. All in all, an exciting end to a boring flight!

Sounds like the controllers did a great job, particularly with AA2243 already across the hold bars on 31R.
Welcome to the forum! Thanks for your input, it is interesting to hear about the perspective from one plane back.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: davalos08 on May 06, 2010, 05:33:58 PM
Vampyre, you are more than right, you can hear some hostility in the tape.

The pilots declare an emergency, they didn't explain the problem, nor the tower asked for the reason, that is a major deviation of procedures, are there any other emergencies besides these one that either ATC or the aircraft in distress doesn't explain the reason for the declaration??? I think not, for those of us who fly we have heard countless times pilots declaring an emergency, and everytime the same words are said, either by ATC or the crew. Now this tape doesn't contain any part of that, neither the crew informed the particular problem nor ATC, ATC didn't even asked if assitance was necessary! (if they did, and is hidden in some transmission it would be good to hear, and I apologize if that is the case).

shamefully both parts failed, crew and ATC
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: speedotann on May 06, 2010, 06:38:18 PM
Lax-Jfk...We do not know how much fuel they burnt on the way..head wind may of been a bitch! landing on 22 with a 35knt xwind=risk missed approach then vectored out for a hold with low fuel... Errors on both ends of the spectrum... Lets get over it :mrgreen:

B
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: SirIsaac787 on May 06, 2010, 07:34:26 PM
Story is up on ABC 7 new york:

http://abclocal.go.com/wabc/story?section=news/investigators&id=7425425

The pilot declared the emergency due to the crosswind component.  This is directly from the head of the JFK controller's union.  

What I don't understand is why he didn't just declare missed and get re sequenced. Why did he need to land at that moment. He didn't say anything about low fuel.
The article does say at the end that he was low on fuel, though it's a mystery to me why he didn't declare it if he really was.  I found it interesting that it's the controllers' union that's making a fuss about JFK and doing its best to portray the captain in a favorable light.

jpwilde, your post is pretty much exactly how I feel about the incident.  Well said.

Because the controller's union can spin this as an incident only demonstrating that safety at airports, specifically at JFK, is in danger with minimal staff in the Tower and congested airspace with an old ATC system.  Unions are the ultimate spin doctor.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Cap747 on May 06, 2010, 07:37:10 PM
Because the controller's union can spin this as an incident only demonstrating that safety at airports, specifically at JFK, is in danger with minimal staff in the Tower and congested airspace with an old ATC system.  Unions are the ultimate spin doctor.

Don't forget that runway 31L is under construction for two months.. It seems to be a factor....
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: SirIsaac787 on May 06, 2010, 08:30:17 PM
Lax-Jfk...We do not know how much fuel they burnt on the way..head wind may of been a bitch! landing on 22 with a 35knt xwind=risk missed approach then vectored out for a hold with low fuel... Errors on both ends of the spectrum... Lets get over it :mrgreen:

B

If I recall correctly, federal regulations require the flight to require a certain amount of minimum reserve fuel, regardless of the length of the flight.  I understand that he may have experienced a hold before the final approach and that might have burned some unexpected but...

Again, if I remember it correctly, pilots should make sure they have enough fuel for the approach and go-around if need be.  If they didn't, then they should have diverted.  But perhaps I'm wrong?
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: jaythepilot on May 06, 2010, 09:48:39 PM


If I recall correctly, federal regulations require the flight to require a certain amount of minimum reserve fuel, regardless of the length of the flight.  I understand that he may have experienced a hold before the final approach and that might have burned some unexpected but...

Again, if I remember it correctly, pilots should make sure they have enough fuel for the approach and go-around if need be.  If they didn't, then they should have diverted.  But perhaps I'm wrong?

That's correct, enough fuel to reach the destination, then fly to your filed alternate, and then fly for 45 minutes after that.  However, winds aloft forecasting is an imperfect science, especially when you cross a continent, and you don't always end up with as much fuel as planned.  We still do not know what circumstances led up to that point.

However, it does seem that a number of people are quick to condemn the pilot for not volunteering the nature of the emergency.  In fact, somebody suggested that since the public listens to this frequency, there definitely should have been some advisory exchange.  That seems a bit ridiculous.

From the first time you step in airplane, the priority order is 1)Aviate, 2)Navigate, and lastly, 3)Communicate.  Too many people have died trying to talk on the radio when they should have been flying the airplane.  Once you declare, you're under no obligation to even respond further on the radio if you believe it jeopardizes the safety of the flight.  And there are a lot of situations in an airplane when you just don't have the time or brain cycles left to talk on the radio.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: sykocus on May 06, 2010, 10:38:02 PM
From the first time you step in airplane, the priority order is 1)Aviate, 2)Navigate, and lastly, 3)Communicate.

However the pilot (rather rudely) demanded that the controller "clear the area", but w/o communicating what area was the controller supposed to clear? All planes within 10 miles of the airport? This is JFK we're talking about. Manners aside if you aren't going to communicate you can't expect ATC to be able to help you.

Also while that axiom is a good one for pilots (especially new ones) to remember their priorities it shouldn't be an excuse. In this situation AAL2 was being flown 2 experienced, professional pilots. At least I assume you need a lot of hours to be sitting in the cockpit of a H/B762.

3 minutes 54 seconds pass from the time AAL2 says he can't accept the approach to 22 until he's given taxi instructions (presumably on landing roll). I can imagine the pilots' workload is above average at this point and their time is valuable. So the 5 things either pilot has time to say the controller are: "declare emergency", "clear the area", "i told you 3 times...", "turning left...move every body from our way", and reading back the landing clearance? Obviously the first and the last are necessary, but the other 3 could easily been used to say something infinitely more useful then what was said.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: w0x0f on May 06, 2010, 11:12:36 PM
Because the controller's union can spin this as an incident only demonstrating that safety at airports, specifically at JFK, is in danger with minimal staff in the Tower and congested airspace with an old ATC system.  Unions are the ultimate spin doctor.

Talk about spin, you win the prize, Isaac.  The NATCA representative made no reference to ATC staffing at all.  He said nothing about congested airspace.  He talked about reduced runway capacity due to construction but airspace was never mentioned.  He did not discuss an antiquated ATC system at all.  Equipment was never mentioned.

What he did say was that the plan that has been devised by the FAA to work around the runway construction has shortfalls.  One of the shortfalls was that in order to use multiple runways to maximize capacity at JFK during strong west winds requires aircraft to land with a crosswind.  Landing all aircraft into the wind on 31R would be safer but drastically reduces airport capacity.  So his point was that safety was taking a back seat to capacity in this instance. 

w0x0f         
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: jaythepilot on May 06, 2010, 11:26:48 PM
The pilot "rather rudely" told the controller to clear the area because the controller, after several attempts, was not picking up on the declaration of the emergency.  The pilot warned he would declare an emergency, then declared an emergency, and when it was clear the controller wasn't picking up on it, he got more pointed in conveying that information.  If I had to say "declaring an emergency" three times before a controller started acting, I'd be pretty upset as well.  I'd say the transmissions were still pretty useful in that the controller had still not acknowledged their declaration.

Those priorities don't change as you acquire hours.  Perfectly good airliners have been flown right into the ground because the pilots weren't "flying the airplane."
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: SirIsaac787 on May 06, 2010, 11:33:08 PM
Because the controller's union can spin this as an incident only demonstrating that safety at airports, specifically at JFK, is in danger with minimal staff in the Tower and congested airspace with an old ATC system.  Unions are the ultimate spin doctor.

Talk about spin, you win the prize, Isaac.  The NATCA representative made no reference to ATC staffing at all.  He said nothing about congested airspace.  He talked about reduced runway capacity due to construction but airspace was never mentioned.  He did not discuss an antiquated ATC system at all.  Equipment was never mentioned.

What he did say was that the plan that has been devised by the FAA to work around the runway construction has shortfalls.  One of the shortfalls was that in order to use multiple runways to maximize capacity at JFK during strong west winds requires aircraft to land with a crosswind.  Landing all aircraft into the wind on 31R would be safer but drastically reduces airport capacity.  So his point was that safety was taking a back seat to capacity in this instance. 

w0x0f         

If you know unions, you know what I'm talking about.  Unions are notorious for spinning things in complete opposite directions to draw public support and that is all I was saying.  I wasn't being literal in that they would spin it that way, but that they can use it to draw attention to their cause.  And lately, those have been hot button issues with the unions.  That is all.  No spinning here.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: SirIsaac787 on May 06, 2010, 11:38:09 PM


If I recall correctly, federal regulations require the flight to require a certain amount of minimum reserve fuel, regardless of the length of the flight.  I understand that he may have experienced a hold before the final approach and that might have burned some unexpected but...

Again, if I remember it correctly, pilots should make sure they have enough fuel for the approach and go-around if need be.  If they didn't, then they should have diverted.  But perhaps I'm wrong?

That's correct, enough fuel to reach the destination, then fly to your filed alternate, and then fly for 45 minutes after that.  However, winds aloft forecasting is an imperfect science, especially when you cross a continent, and you don't always end up with as much fuel as planned.  We still do not know what circumstances led up to that point.

However, it does seem that a number of people are quick to condemn the pilot for not volunteering the nature of the emergency.  In fact, somebody suggested that since the public listens to this frequency, there definitely should have been some advisory exchange.  That seems a bit ridiculous.

From the first time you step in airplane, the priority order is 1)Aviate, 2)Navigate, and lastly, 3)Communicate.  Too many people have died trying to talk on the radio when they should have been flying the airplane.  Once you declare, you're under no obligation to even respond further on the radio if you believe it jeopardizes the safety of the flight.  And there are a lot of situations in an airplane when you just don't have the time or brain cycles left to talk on the radio.

Agreed.  Communication is not the number 1 priority and it never should be.  I was just arguing the point that fuel shouldn't have been an issue as that is something they should be monitoring and making sure calculations are still in check as the flight progresses, since as you said, winds aloft forecasts are never perfect.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: kack911 on May 06, 2010, 11:43:05 PM
Everyone seems to be beating around the bush (sts) without addressing a few common sense issues.

Yes, all domestic flights are dispatched with enough fuel to fly to the destination, fly an instrument approach (and if required by conditions at the time of release, enough fuel to go missed and fly to the most distant alternate) and thereafter fly for an additional 45 minutes. That's fact.

It can be reasonably assumed that they had an alternate based on the forecast winds alone (I have no idea what the ceiling or vis was at the time), as every company I've been with requires that an alternate be listed if the max crosswind component is forecast to be above limits at the ETA.

It can be further assumed that they were carrying additional hold fuel or contingency fuel because 1) It's a New York Metro airport, 2) the anticipated traffic volume, 3) the airspace complexity, 4) the forecast winds, 5) the closed runway, 6) high likelyhood of airborne holding, ATC tactical reroutes, and/or extensive vectoring as a result of 1-5.

So, all that being said, yes, sometimes factors pile up and you end up in a situation where you anticipate landing with less than reserve fuel. BUT, when that happens, the first thing that pilots do is declare "Minimum Fuel". This gets everyone's attention, and while it doesn't necessarily make you priority #1, most controllers will do whatever they can to ensure that you don't take any unnecessary delays.

Does anyone have him on tape saying those words?

If the situation deteriorates any further, the next words he will say are "Emergency Fuel". At that moment, he becomes an emergency aircraft with all of the priorities and assistance that is afforded to such aircraft. The most likely outcome would be a quick diversion to a closer airport, there are plenty of them that can accomodate a diversion without delay.

But I didn't hear him say those words either.

So, no, the idea that he was low on fuel and was in imminent danger of fuel exhaustion is pure baloney. If he actually believed that his fuel situation was critical, he made no attempt to share that information with ATC.

With the fuel situation nonsense out of the way, we can focus on what he actually DID say, which was something along the lines of "If you don't give me 31R, I'll declare an emergency". Again, that's a fact.

Anyone who is even remotely aware of how this business works can see right through the BS and knows exactly what was going on here. It's not rocket science...The PIC probably has lots of experience flying into JFK, and this is obviously not the first time that he's been expected to land on a runway that is more operationally advantageous for the airport, as opposed to the runway most convenient (or even safest, if you prefer) for the pilot.

All he had to do was tell the controller that he was unable to accept the runway assignment. They would have vectored him out and resequenced him for 31R as requested, no big deal.

Instead, he decided he was going to "show" them by busting out his Emergency Authority, and making a spectacle in order to prove his point. In so doing, he deviated from an ATC clearance which does, in fact, require a report to the administrator. He also completely unnecessarily disrupted other traffic, unnecessarily increased the controller's workload, and unnecessarily decreased safety margins.

He is a tool of epic proportions, and I would certainly hope that the meeting he undoubtedly had with the Chief Pilot resulted in significant discipline. Unless there was something going on that isn't reflected on the tapes, there was no justification for his behavior whatsoever. This was a blatant and willful misuse of his Emergency Authority.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: w0x0f on May 06, 2010, 11:56:04 PM
Because the controller's union can spin this as an incident only demonstrating that safety at airports, specifically at JFK, is in danger with minimal staff in the Tower and congested airspace with an old ATC system.  Unions are the ultimate spin doctor.

Talk about spin, you win the prize, Isaac.  The NATCA representative made no reference to ATC staffing at all.  He said nothing about congested airspace.  He talked about reduced runway capacity due to construction but airspace was never mentioned.  He did not discuss an antiquated ATC system at all.  Equipment was never mentioned.

What he did say was that the plan that has been devised by the FAA to work around the runway construction has shortfalls.  One of the shortfalls was that in order to use multiple runways to maximize capacity at JFK during strong west winds requires aircraft to land with a crosswind.  Landing all aircraft into the wind on 31R would be safer but drastically reduces airport capacity.  So his point was that safety was taking a back seat to capacity in this instance. 

w0x0f         

If you know unions, you know what I'm talking about.  Unions are notorious for spinning things in complete opposite directions to draw public support and that is all I was saying.  I wasn't being literal in that they would spin it that way, but that they can use it to draw attention to their cause.  And lately, those have been hot button issues with the unions.  That is all.  No spinning here.

Did you even listen to the interview?  There was nothing of the sort.  Whether you like unions or not, your view of unions has nothing to do with what was said by the union representative.  You really need to stay on subject.  There has been enough speculation and conjecture within this thread.  We don't need someone putting their words in others mouths.

http://www.liveatc.net/forums/listener-forum/out-of-line-postings-and-wild-conjecture/

w0x0f

Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: SirIsaac787 on May 07, 2010, 12:17:46 AM
Because the controller's union can spin this as an incident only demonstrating that safety at airports, specifically at JFK, is in danger with minimal staff in the Tower and congested airspace with an old ATC system.  Unions are the ultimate spin doctor.

Talk about spin, you win the prize, Isaac.  The NATCA representative made no reference to ATC staffing at all.  He said nothing about congested airspace.  He talked about reduced runway capacity due to construction but airspace was never mentioned.  He did not discuss an antiquated ATC system at all.  Equipment was never mentioned.

What he did say was that the plan that has been devised by the FAA to work around the runway construction has shortfalls.  One of the shortfalls was that in order to use multiple runways to maximize capacity at JFK during strong west winds requires aircraft to land with a crosswind.  Landing all aircraft into the wind on 31R would be safer but drastically reduces airport capacity.  So his point was that safety was taking a back seat to capacity in this instance. 

w0x0f         

If you know unions, you know what I'm talking about.  Unions are notorious for spinning things in complete opposite directions to draw public support and that is all I was saying.  I wasn't being literal in that they would spin it that way, but that they can use it to draw attention to their cause.  And lately, those have been hot button issues with the unions.  That is all.  No spinning here.

Did you even listen to the interview?  There was nothing of the sort.  Whether you like unions or not, your view of unions has nothing to do with what was said by the union representative.  You really need to stay on subject.  There has been enough speculation and conjecture within this thread.  We don't need someone putting their words in others mouths.

http://www.liveatc.net/forums/listener-forum/out-of-line-postings-and-wild-conjecture/

w0x0f



This isn't wild conjecture and this isn't harming anyone or attacking anyone.  Under that post, this entire thread might as well be deleted now for some people attacking the pilot (or is the rule ATC-friendly only :-P).  Stop being a rule stickler on a simple little post that in all honesty, meant nothing, until you posted your bit.

For the record, I read the article posted and it did seem as if the union was using this as a way to bring about public support for their agenda, rightly or wrongly so (I actually believe rightly so, despite what you may think).  Again, my only point in what I said was that unions can take something and spin it to rally the public behind them.  I happened to choose two of the most discussed issues that people are trying to get support for.

The poster I quoted was commenting on how it was odd for the union to defend the pilot in the case.  I gave a general explanation which I later explained, for clarification, wasn't necessarily literal to this case with the examples I used.

EDIT: If you'd really like to discuss this further, please don't hesitate to PM me.  Otherwise, I'm done discussing this as I think we have now strayed too far away from the thread's point and purpose and I'd like to not deviate more.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: SirIsaac787 on May 07, 2010, 12:22:44 AM
Everyone seems to be beating around the bush (sts) without addressing a few common sense issues.

Yes, all domestic flights are dispatched with enough fuel to fly to the destination, fly an instrument approach (and if required by conditions at the time of release, enough fuel to go missed and fly to the most distant alternate) and thereafter fly for an additional 45 minutes. That's fact.

It can be reasonably assumed that they had an alternate based on the forecast winds alone (I have no idea what the ceiling or vis was at the time), as every company I've been with requires that an alternate be listed if the max crosswind component is forecast to be above limits at the ETA.

It can be further assumed that they were carrying additional hold fuel or contingency fuel because 1) It's a New York Metro airport, 2) the anticipated traffic volume, 3) the airspace complexity, 4) the forecast winds, 5) the closed runway, 6) high likelyhood of airborne holding, ATC tactical reroutes, and/or extensive vectoring as a result of 1-5.

So, all that being said, yes, sometimes factors pile up and you end up in a situation where you anticipate landing with less than reserve fuel. BUT, when that happens, the first thing that pilots do is declare "Minimum Fuel". This gets everyone's attention, and while it doesn't necessarily make you priority #1, most controllers will do whatever they can to ensure that you don't take any unnecessary delays.

Does anyone have him on tape saying those words?

If the situation deteriorates any further, the next words he will say are "Emergency Fuel". At that moment, he becomes an emergency aircraft with all of the priorities and assistance that is afforded to such aircraft. The most likely outcome would be a quick diversion to a closer airport, there are plenty of them that can accomodate a diversion without delay.

But I didn't hear him say those words either.

So, no, the idea that he was low on fuel and was in imminent danger of fuel exhaustion is pure baloney. If he actually believed that his fuel situation was critical, he made no attempt to share that information with ATC.

With the fuel situation nonsense out of the way, we can focus on what he actually DID say, which was something along the lines of "If you don't give me 31R, I'll declare an emergency". Again, that's a fact.

Anyone who is even remotely aware of how this business works can see right through the BS and knows exactly what was going on here. It's not rocket science...The PIC probably has lots of experience flying into JFK, and this is obviously not the first time that he's been expected to land on a runway that is more operationally advantageous for the airport, as opposed to the runway most convenient (or even safest, if you prefer) for the pilot.

All he had to do was tell the controller that he was unable to accept the runway assignment. They would have vectored him out and resequenced him for 31R as requested, no big deal.

Instead, he decided he was going to "show" them by busting out his Emergency Authority, and making a spectacle in order to prove his point. In so doing, he deviated from an ATC clearance which does, in fact, require a report to the administrator. He also completely unnecessarily disrupted other traffic, unnecessarily increased the controller's workload, and unnecessarily decreased safety margins.

He is a tool of epic proportions, and I would certainly hope that the meeting he undoubtedly had with the Chief Pilot resulted in significant discipline. Unless there was something going on that isn't reflected on the tapes, there was no justification for his behavior whatsoever. This was a blatant and willful misuse of his Emergency Authority.

I think you may have dramatized a bit here or there but overall I agree.....based on what we know so far.  I am one of those that are criticizing the pilot here, but my criticism is conditional.  It is a possibility that something we don't know happened and the situation was more immediate than was relayed on the radio and in fact, the pilot had trouble communicating while he was aviating, his first priority.  But I'm sticking to it that until something that details that is released, I have to believe that this emergency declaration wasn't warranted and the pilot mishandled the situation.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: davalos08 on May 07, 2010, 12:47:16 AM
Isaac, of course the first priority is aviate, but that is why CRM exists, one pilot flies the other communicates, works on checklists, etc, etc.

Maybe this flight lacked CRM as well as it lacked ATC professionalism in not asking the flight what was the nature of the emergency.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: allfive on May 07, 2010, 12:50:02 AM
Quote
However, I was on AWE12 sitting on the left side of the aircraft. It was pretty weird to watch a 767 make an arching turn directly into our flight path. Obviously by that point we'd been held at 2000 with approach clearance cancelled, but as a passenger, it was certainly a bit unnerving. The captain came on just after we climbed to 3000 and explained that AA2 had declared emergency and thus we had to go around, but you could tell he wasn't sure why.

I'm responding to the passenger who saw "an arching turn directly into our flight path." I'm just a passenger who can't help but be caught up in the thread of this event. I couldn't quite make out the scenario from what was said. If you were sitting on the left, what did you see? Did it look like the plane was coming at you?

I guess it's all interesting because underneath the exchanges there was a mix of fear, brinkmanship and fast and lucky thinking.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Flipr1Arrival on May 07, 2010, 01:20:31 AM
First question for all you airline fuel reserve experts:

Were they dispatched with alternate fuel?

I was hoping for an improvement in knowledge since my post on page 5, expect for a few glimmers of sunshine, nothing much has improved.

I guess the 'expert" Chief Pilots from the "virtual airlines" will continue the thread.

Later

B727/B737/B757/B767/B777 ect
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: kack911 on May 07, 2010, 01:52:18 AM
First question for all you airline fuel reserve experts:

Were they dispatched with alternate fuel?

I was hoping for an improvement in knowledge since my post on page 5, expect for a few glimmers of sunshine, nothing much has improved.

I guess the 'expert" Chief Pilots from the "virtual airlines" will continue the thread.

Later

B727/B737/B757/B767/B777 ect

Not sure who that's directed at, but I'm betting you know full well it's almost impossible to tell after the fact without direct knowledge. Does AA use Exemption 8653/4/5/6/7/8/9? Did they use it on that particular flight? Without knowing the answer to that, and without the TAF used at the time of dispatch, you can't say for sure.

But I CAN say for sure that I've never worked for a company that allowed me to dispatch an airplane to an airport where the winds exceeded the crosswind/taliwind limits without listing a solid alternate. And even if it wasn't required, you only have to get burned once with an unnecessary diversion to learn when and alternate is needed even when it's not "required".

Besides, the Captain signed the release, so he was apparently ok with the amount of fuel he was dispatched with (or he asked for more , and got it), as well as the presence or absence of an alternate. But what does that have to do with anything? If he was worried about fuel, he would have said so on the radio.

If he was worried about fuel and DIDN'T say something on the radio, then he needs to go back to CRM/DRM.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: SirIsaac787 on May 07, 2010, 02:13:12 AM
Isaac, of course the first priority is aviate, but that is why CRM exists, one pilot flies the other communicates, works on checklists, etc, etc.

Maybe this flight lacked CRM as well as it lacked ATC professionalism in not asking the flight what was the nature of the emergency.

Maybe you misunderstood my post but I agree.  I was just presenting the idea that there always seems to be a little more a story to these types of things than most suspect.  Who knows...maybe something completely unexpected happened and both pilots had their undivided attention on getting the airplane down safely?  If they did, then perhaps a communication breakdown might be slightly understandable (no one's perfect and getting a plane down safely in an emergency is priority number 1).  But unless that is out in the public and is knowledge to me, then I have to agree with you.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: sykocus on May 07, 2010, 02:35:20 AM
The pilot "rather rudely" told the controller to clear the area because the controller, after several attempts, was not picking up on the declaration of the emergency.  The pilot warned he would declare an emergency, then declared an emergency, and when it was clear the controller wasn't picking up on it, he got more pointed in conveying that information.  If I had to say "declaring an emergency" three times before a controller started acting, I'd be pretty upset as well.  I'd say the transmissions were still pretty useful in that the controller had still not acknowledged their declaration.

Those priorities don't change as you acquire hours.  Perfectly good airliners have been flown right into the ground because the pilots weren't "flying the airplane."

Listen to the clip again. The pilot doesn't declare an emergency 3 times.  He says "if you don't get us to 31R we will declare...". The controller say's he'll pass it along. The pilot didn't say he needs to be immediately cleared for an approach to 31 or he'll declare he just says if can't get it he will. There are other aircraft in the in the sky and on the ground using 31 and the controller needs to coordinate. Then the pilot say's he is declaring. That's the first time he's actually saying he's an emergency. Even then he still doesn't say needs an immediate approach clearance. When an aircraft goes missed approach most of them don't want to immediately circle to the a runway 90 degess offset to the one they were just lined up on. They get climbout instructions and get resequenced, but evidently that's not what AAL2 wanted but somehow the controller was supposed to know this w/o AAL2 telling him because when he tried to give him further instructions he's told the by a unidentified voice "clear the area", but I think all most of us agree it's probably AAL2. Remember the pilot has still only said he was an emergency once at this point. The controller verifies he's an emergency and the pilot claims to have "told [him] 3 times...", yet he only declared an emergency once, and still has not said he needs an immediate approach clearance to 31r. Up to this point the pilot only said the word emergency 3 total times. Once was when he said he "will declare" if he doesn't get 31, and another he when he's claiming to have already told the controller 3 times. That's not the same has having told the controller 3 times they are an emergency.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: davolijj on May 07, 2010, 07:27:46 AM
Good points sykocus.

I got the impression that the 22L localizer being unreliable or OTS compounded the pilot's decision to declare.  That would explain why the whole exchange didn't happen with approach when they cleared him for the visual.  Without localizer guidance they would have had to hand-fly the approach with a nasty crosswind and may not have felt they could perform a stabilized approach under those conditions.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: VampyreGTX on May 07, 2010, 09:18:50 AM
First question for all you airline fuel reserve experts:

Were they dispatched with alternate fuel?

I was hoping for an improvement in knowledge since my post on page 5, expect for a few glimmers of sunshine, nothing much has improved.

I guess the 'expert" Chief Pilots from the "virtual airlines" will continue the thread.

Later

B727/B737/B757/B767/B777 ect

Yes, Flipr, cause you have added so much, with all that experience in almost every Boeing jet flying according to your last line there, why don't you provide your infinite wisdom?  A lot of people on here are actual controllers and pilots, yet there are others as well that are not, but I forgot that no one can discuss something in a public forum unless they are considered an expert witness on it  :roll:  Yup, lets not share opinions, ideas, or make a comment, that even if wrong, can lead to a correction and the poster learning something. 
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: VampyreGTX on May 07, 2010, 09:28:05 AM
In fact, somebody suggested that since the public listens to this frequency, there definitely should have been some advisory exchange.  That seems a bit ridiculous.

Read my post again, that is not at all what I said.  My reference to being on a radio frequency that is knowingly monitored by many aviaition enthusiasts as well as possibly passengers on other planes, was meant toward the professionalism of the exchange.  The ego's being involved was beyond how any pilot should act.  Go ahead and bitch and moan about the idiot controllers amongst yourselves in the cockpit (and vice-versa), but be professional in your interaction with everyone you deal with when representing your company and profession.  A pilot had one additional powerful word in their arsenal in addition to 'emergency', and that is unable.  IF (and this IS conjecture) the issue was truly simply the crosswind component problem, all the pilot would need to say is UNABLE.  Quick, concise responses/communications without trying to one-up each other would have kept this thread to less than half a dozen posts. 

In the end, I can guarantee this wasn't the first, and won't be the last, exchange between the pilot and ATC that will be this way.

Also, I highly recommend reading skyocus' post. 

Now, let me get back to my virtual airline....  :roll: LOL.  Whatever....

Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Cap747 on May 07, 2010, 01:29:02 PM
I too live by the knolledge this is a public discussion and therefore I don't have to type as a lawyer or news agency, but if Flipr wants Internet to be the place only for "official reports" then he better find his own planet  8-)

Now to the topic again: in a earlier post I had to listen in slowmotion to the take over of that radio call.... saying you don't under(stand) this does indicate a immediate change of situation they were in to.

I have heard many situations where pilots went out of traffic and got themselves into a holding pattern and after a minute or so stating the nature of it.... he could have said we need to land immediately here for whatever reason and I remember that Avianca there fore...
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: knicksinny on May 07, 2010, 01:55:29 PM
today at 13:26 Z a quick exchange at jfk between a jetblue pilot and controller where the pilot ask if he can land on 4L and the tower says no unless you are declaring an emergency. 
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency _nah_unless you declare"
Post by: Cap747 on May 07, 2010, 03:15:08 PM
Yeah that was sarcasm  :-D
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: thetinman_n90 on May 07, 2010, 06:58:33 PM
the faa and the airlines got together and planned this runway closure together (31L) ....the airlines told the faa they would land in winds similar to what existed at the time of this event....there are many pilots that are pissed off about being put in these situations...there was NOT a fuel issue....pilots want to land into the wind - and that's exactly what this captain did after he disregarded ATC instructions and failed to tell ATC the nature of his emergency
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: jpwilde on May 07, 2010, 09:06:34 PM
Hey Vampyre and others who are laying some blame with the controller, care to elaborate your thoughts on that?  (And I mean that with no sarcasm or pointedness--I'm really curious.)

The way I hear it, the controller was just too busy to ask for info on the nature of the emergency, souls aboard, etc.  He had two planes that conflicted with what AA2 was going to do and he needed the frequency and/or brain cycles to deal with that.  If that's the case I would kind of hope that he wouldn't waste time getting the details instead of getting planes out of the way.

As soon as he was clear that they were an emergency, the controller gave them a vector.  Maybe not the vector they wanted, but it's not as though he can vector them into an unsafe situation just because they're an emergency.  I imagine it would have gone something like "fly runway heading ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ok, make a left turn you're cleared to land"  Plus, as soon as it became clear what AA2 was doing, he went by the book and cleared them to land anyway.

Also, to my ear, the controllers hostility didn't come out until they were on the ground.  That's unfortunate, but understandable.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: cptbrw on May 07, 2010, 11:47:37 PM
As someone who has done some work in the "human factors" field I tried to look at this from that point of view.  Now I may very well be way off base but figured I'd offer some observations from that point of view.

Consider the possibility that the PIC of AAL2 is nearing the end of his 5 hour flight from LAX and, as he approaches NY is directed to take a few laps south of LENDY for weather, or traffic or whatever reason.  Frustration.  Maybe he even reports he is nearing minimum fuel - something the NY approach controllers often hear, especially from flights arriving from over the big water - so they don't seem overly concerned about his report.  He probably knows that JFK has been using 31R for arrivals for at least a little while.  Next, he is vectored off the hold for approach to 22L.  More time in the air, longer taxi time to the gate possibly including some holds for other traffic on the ground.  More frustration.  Next, he finds and reports the localizer isn't working for 22L to which the controller responds it's been reset and should "come up in awhile."  Even more frustration.  Finally, the wind report with the crosswind component nearing maximum for his aircraft.  Now he's going to a runway he hadn't fixed on, is landing with a high/max crosswind component and can't even rely on the localizer to give him any help on final.  More frustration and SNAP. He's had enough - he's going to 31R which is where he thought he was going to go since he started holding near LENDY.  And he's going there now and get everyone else out of his way.  

Nothing definitive here, not trying to blame anyone.  I know this is pure conjecture with little factual support.  No need to flame if you disagree.  Just a view from a different lens for your consideration.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: kack911 on May 08, 2010, 01:38:15 AM
I think that's a perfectly valid point of view, and some of those aspects and feelings were likely present.

But you can't just "snap" and declare an emergency because you've had a long flight, had to hold, don't like the runway assignment, or face the possibility of sitting in the penalty box waiting for a gate. Those are the day-to-day realities of operating within the NAS. 

That doesn't mean it doesn't happen. Everyone has bad days, everyone has lapses in judgement, and everyone does things that they'd do differently if given the opportunity. Maybe this guy had a bad day and regrets his actions; maybe he still feels justified. Who knows?

Either way, it doesn't excuse the behavior. All of the factors you mentioned could have been mitigated in one fashion or another, without resorting to what he did. The chain starts well before he checked in with tower.

If he can't handle sitting in the seat for 5 hours, he should have bid another line, or another aircraft. If this was just a transient issue, he could have called out "fatigued". If saying "minimum fuel" didn't get anybody's attention, "emergency fuel" would have. If he didn't like the possibility of getting 22, he should have told Approach that he couldn't accept it so they could pre-coordinate. If it wasn't until final approach that he decided he didn't like 22, then he should have gone missed and requested 31. If at any time during this excercise some other factor necessitated an immediate landing, he should have declared an emergency and stated the nature of the problem. Failing all of that, he could have filled out a company JSAP report, an ASRS report, called the TRACON or Tower on a landline, called his Chief Pilot or Flight Standards people, or even called the FAA Safety Hotline.

But it's hard to believe that some unforseen circumstance caused him to declare, because he made the explicit threat to do so based solely on the runway assignment only a few moments before. He had this in mind long before he keyed the mic to say it.

So I think you're right, this entire incident is really just the culmination of stressors and the manner in which the crew chose to deal with them. My personal opinion is that they should have done it differently.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: SirIsaac787 on May 08, 2010, 02:55:47 AM
As someone who has done some work in the "human factors" field I tried to look at this from that point of view.  Now I may very well be way off base but figured I'd offer some observations from that point of view.

Consider the possibility that the PIC of AAL2 is nearing the end of his 5 hour flight from LAX and, as he approaches NY is directed to take a few laps south of LENDY for weather, or traffic or whatever reason.  Frustration.  Maybe he even reports he is nearing minimum fuel - something the NY approach controllers often hear, especially from flights arriving from over the big water - so they don't seem overly concerned about his report.  He probably knows that JFK has been using 31R for arrivals for at least a little while.  Next, he is vectored off the hold for approach to 22L.  More time in the air, longer taxi time to the gate possibly including some holds for other traffic on the ground.  More frustration.  Next, he finds and reports the localizer isn't working for 22L to which the controller responds it's been reset and should "come up in awhile."  Even more frustration.  Finally, the wind report with the crosswind component nearing maximum for his aircraft.  Now he's going to a runway he hadn't fixed on, is landing with a high/max crosswind component and can't even rely on the localizer to give him any help on final.  More frustration and SNAP. He's had enough - he's going to 31R which is where he thought he was going to go since he started holding near LENDY.  And he's going there now and get everyone else out of his way.  

Nothing definitive here, not trying to blame anyone.  I know this is pure conjecture with little factual support.  No need to flame if you disagree.  Just a view from a different lens for your consideration.

That is definitely one side of it.  And unless more is released from the FAA or whoever and/or one of us on this forums was actually involved, we will never know the exact situation with the exact conditions and whatnot.  All I can say is that if your case was true, then he needs some time off from being a pilot.  Everyone will have a bad day, sure.  But just "snapping" because of building frustration on one flight can be unsafe, and at the worst, deadly.  You never, EVER, want to have the "get-there-itis" and a pilot should be able to control that.  There have been a few cases in history when pilot error was blamed and the pilot really should have gone around but experienced this theory of "get-there-itis."  A good pilot, especially one in command of a heavy aircraft with hundreds on board, needs to control that urge and remember that safety is priority number one.

When in doubt, go around and try again or head somewhere else.  It isn't worth your life or others' lives.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: sykocus on May 08, 2010, 04:51:17 AM
As someone who has done some work in the "human factors" field I tried to look at this from that point of view.  Now I may very well be way off base but figured I'd offer some observations from that point of view.

While that's not an unreasonable theory many of those situations could have been mitigated by better communication. Such as:

Maybe he even reports he is nearing minimum fuel - something the NY approach controllers often hear, especially from flights arriving from over the big water - so they don't seem overly concerned about his report. 

The pilot could have said
AAL2: New York, we're minium fuel. We have 10 minutes before we have to divert.
As an aside: approaching minium fuel means nothing. Minium fuel it self is just an advisory that the aircraft can't accept any undue delay.

Next, he is vectored off the hold for approach to 22L. More time in the air, longer taxi time to the gate possibly including some holds for other traffic on the ground.  More frustration.  Next,

While he wouldn't have up to the minute winds like he got from the tower he would have the lastest wx obs from the ATIS and would have known there was a high crosswind.
AAL2: Approach the crosswinds for 22L are close to our max and we'd rather not risk going around with our fuel state. Request vectors for 31R.

  SNAP. He's had enough - he's going to 31R which is where he thought he was going to go since he started holding near LENDY.  And he's going there now and get everyone else out of his way. 

And finally
AAL2: Tower we're declaring an emergency. We're breaking off the approach and entering a right base for 31R!!!


Hindsight is 20/20 and like you said this is just conjecture. But any single one of those transmissions could be what takes a situation like this one from being the hot topic in the forums and a story on the evening news to just another day at the office for the pilots and controllers involved. Much like tragic accidents often all it takes is one extra transmission to break the chain of events.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Cap747 on May 08, 2010, 06:43:26 AM
Just for common sence:

If you would be driving your car at the most left lane of a 4 lane freeway, suddenly you decide to drive the most right lane without looking up or backwards to see if there are other cars on the road...we would have a name for such behaviour....
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: VictorK on May 08, 2010, 05:06:55 PM
Ya know, I've read this whole thread, and there's lots of discussion about what the pilot failed to communicate to the controller (i.e. the nature of the emergency), but nowhere has anyone mentioned that the JFK Tower Feed here contains three frequencies. Therefore, it is not a given that the entire exchange between the pilot and the controller is included here. Rather, there's a strong likelyhood that something has been missed.

Just because it didn't make it into the archives of LiveATC doesn't mean it wasn't said on the frequency the exchange took place on. Any conclusion, putting the pilot in a negative light, or a positive light, reached solely on the information available here, is potentially flawed.

Anyone who spends any time here should be mindful of that shortcoming before they put their fingers on the keyboard. Or am I wrong?
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: SirIsaac787 on May 08, 2010, 05:47:40 PM
Ya know, I've read this whole thread, and there's lots of discussion about what the pilot failed to communicate to the controller (i.e. the nature of the emergency), but nowhere has anyone mentioned that the JFK Tower Feed here contains three frequencies. Therefore, it is not a given that the entire exchange between the pilot and the controller is included here. Rather, there's a strong likelyhood that something has been missed.

Just because it didn't make it into the archives of LiveATC doesn't mean it wasn't said on the frequency the exchange took place on. Any conclusion, putting the pilot in a negative light, or a positive light, reached solely on the information available here, is potentially flawed.

Anyone who spends any time here should be mindful of that shortcoming before they put their fingers on the keyboard. Or am I wrong?

It appears as if he was only handled by this Tower Controller.  I don't see why they would hand him off to another controller.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Cap747 on May 08, 2010, 06:21:22 PM
I too have listened to all the frequencies, earlier postings of me have stated he had asked for and granted twice a diversion for weather at the approach feed... there was definitely nothing wrong there, so we are not missing parts of the conversation here.... only the CVR recording  :x
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: djmodifyd on May 08, 2010, 07:14:38 PM
I really feel as if we missed something here....AND if we DIDN'T...then i feel the pilot was out of line in his actions.  But again, i really do feel like we missed something.

And at the least, the pilot should have stated the nature of the emergency so the controller knew how to handle it, from what we heard, i can understand the frustration from the controller.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: VictorK on May 08, 2010, 07:23:16 PM
SirIsaac and Cap747, you're both missing the point. The "Tower" feed comes from a scanner, not a receiver dedicated to only one frequency. The scanner is covering three frequencies.

Quote
KJFK Tower
Feed Status: UP   Listeners: 116  

<snip the "listen" buttons>

Facility                                      Frequency
JFK Tower (4L/22R, 13R/31L) 123.900
JFK Tower (4R/22L, 13L/31R) 119.100
TCA (Class B 2000ft/below within 8nm) 125.250



The scanner might've been locked onto a conversation taking place on one of the other two frequencies while some relevant bit of information was being exchanged on the frequency in question, and it wouldn't be heard here either on the live feed, or in the archives. The original poster/editor of the clip might be able to shed some light on how much time elapsed between transmissions between American and the Tower, (and which has been edited out for the sake of brevity), which might give a clue as to whether something may be missing here or not, but as it's been posted, there's no guarantee that you're hearing everything that was said.

Trust me, I've spent enough time listening to scanners to understand the disadvantges. If the feed in question is set up somehow differently, then I welcome somebody familiar with the specifics to correct me.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: cptbrw on May 08, 2010, 08:55:34 PM
SirIsaac and Cap747, you're both missing the point. The "Tower" feed comes from a scanner, not a receiver dedicated to only one frequency. The scanner is covering three frequencies.

Quote
KJFK Tower
Feed Status: UP   Listeners: 116   

<snip the "listen" buttons>

Facility                                      Frequency
JFK Tower (4L/22R, 13R/31L) 123.900
JFK Tower (4R/22L, 13L/31R) 119.100
TCA (Class B 2000ft/below within 8nm) 125.250



The scanner might've been locked onto a conversation taking place on one of the other two frequencies while some relevant bit of information was being exchanged on the frequency in question, and it wouldn't be heard here either on the live feed, or in the archives. The original poster/editor of the clip might be able to shed some light on how much time elapsed between transmissions between American and the Tower, (and which has been edited out for the sake of brevity), which might give a clue as to whether something may be missing here or not, but as it's been posted, there's no guarantee that you're hearing everything that was said.

Trust me, I've spent enough time listening to scanners to understand the disadvantges. If the feed in question is set up somehow differently, then I welcome somebody familiar with the specifics to correct me.


VictorK, your point is well taken.  So I went back and listened to the raw feed archive. You can listen to the full archive yourself if you so desire so I won't go into great detail.  AAL2 first shows up on the tower frequency at the 6:24 mark of the archive.  From that point until the 9:50 mark there is either dead space or transmission on the same frequency.  By that point (9:50) AAL2 had already declared an emergency and further complained that he had "declared an emergency 3 times."  From 9:50 to 10:10 there are transmissions on another tower frequency.  From 10:10 to 10:56 there are further exchanges on the AAL2 frequency highlighted by AAL2 reporting they are turning to land on 31R so tower better clear the area.  From 10:56 to the end of the incident there are a couple of transmissions on other frequencies along with the ending exchanges between tower and AAL2. 

The point is, if you listen carefully to the archive you will probably agree that there are only very brief periods when the scanner is stopped on another channel and it does not seem that any substantive transmissions from AAL2 were missed.  It's possible but does not seem likely.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Cap747 on May 08, 2010, 09:13:39 PM
Whatever the real reason is here, he say's :"We can't land on that runway"  what can we make out of that?
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: VictorK on May 08, 2010, 10:17:29 PM
Quote
VictorK, your point is well taken.


Thanks.

I thought it was an important point to make, simply because in 8 pages of discussion, nobody else had made it.

Quote
The point is, if you listen carefully to the archive you will probably agree that there are only very brief periods when the scanner is stopped on another channel and it does not seem that any substantive transmissions from AAL2 were missed.  It's possible but does not seem likely.

I've now listened to the archive, and while you seem to be correct about the earlier content, at approximately 9:41, it seems as though Tower blocks a transmission from American, and from that point until approximately 10:15, the radio traffic seems to be either on another frequency or transmissions to other aircraft on the same frequency. Not saying that he did, but during that period, the American Captain might've unequivocally said his fuel state was critical, which would put the whole situation in a somewhat different light, would it not?

I'll stand by my prior assertion that we can't know the full story from listening only to what's available here.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: uplink on May 09, 2010, 07:21:07 AM
SirIsaac and Cap747, you're both missing the point. The "Tower" feed comes from a scanner, not a receiver dedicated to only one frequency. The scanner is covering three frequencies.

VictorK, Excellent point! I feel many forget these are just scanners.   Important pieces of a conversation are often missed due to this, it only takes a second.  As a feeder myself,  I miss parts of transmissions all the time, because the scanner is off to another channel.   Many people don't realize this, and don't know how scanners work.    I've even read posts here where folks are posting "glued together" versions from entirely differerent frequencies and conversations.

see this post about Burbank here...
http://www.liveatc.net/forums/atcaviation-audio-clips/kbur-runway-incursion-4-19-10/ (http://www.liveatc.net/forums/atcaviation-audio-clips/kbur-runway-incursion-4-19-10/)

 Often times feeders are programming them to scan too many channels to make them sound "exciting".   This only results in a chopped up feed that is a challenge to follow.  The solution: more volunteer feeders!,  :wink:  this means less freqs for a single scanner, and more "complete" radio exchanges.








Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Cap747 on May 09, 2010, 09:50:49 AM
Are you aware this website is not a media (news) or official (governmental) site, like we are figuring out the recordings in a matter we would do a crossword puzzle? with the difficulty of the limitations of what is provided by the feeds...?

Similar to people who watch CSI and try to figure out the outcome?

That is what I am doing here.....
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: VictorK on May 09, 2010, 03:29:14 PM
Quote
Are you aware this website is not a media (news) or official (governmental) site, like we are figuring out the recordings in a matter we would do a crossword puzzle? with the difficulty of the limitations of what is provided by the feeds...?

That's a fine analogy, as long as it's understood that the "limitations of what is provided by the feeds" is understood to be similar to solving a crossword puzzle with all the horizontal clues, but only 2/3 of the vertical clues. You may find places where you have to rely on guesswork alone, and you may not always guess correctly.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: uplink on May 10, 2010, 01:28:12 AM
The sad thing is the media (news) actually does take the recordings from this site and quote them, and print them, and air them on radio and TV.  We are all smart enough to know these are only pieces of the real story.   But it doesn't matter, because the general public don't know how scanners work, and already has a dim view of aviation in the first place.  A story about an emergency at JFK will grab listeners ears, and get good ad time.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: skylord on May 10, 2010, 06:47:17 PM
Hi all.  First post here.  A fellow controller sent me this.

I work at SoCal TRACON and have been a controller for over 22 years.  I can't speak to the JFK issue with direct knowledge, but I can give you all an idea from our side the impact of a runway change and some other points.

First, almost all communication between controllers as well as controllers and pilots is recorded and saved for 45 days.  So I am sure there will be more information coming out about our communications on our side about this.  From my seat in the peanut gallery,  I think the flight crew exercised appropriately their discretion to refuse an ATC clearance based upon the crosswinds and their concern for the safety of the flight.  On the other hand, I personally do not believe they adequately communicated the need for emergency handling in the truest sense of the word.

Second, in congested, complex, and crowded airspace there may be two or three other controllers responsible for approaches to different runways.  I work Burbank and Van Nuys airspace, and if I have a Runway 8 arrival that suddenly needs Runway 33 I have to coordinate that with the sector working the Runway 15 departures (opposite direction).  Now if it is a "double engine failure I'm a 767 glider" type situation, then we will accommodate no matter what and deal with the consequences later.  But I am not convinced that is what happened here. 

It sounds to me like the controller involved was trying to work out an orderly go around and runway change.  The aircraft came over on the Visual to 22L which indicates to me they accepted the clearance from the radar approach controller.  Once the tower issued the current winds the flight crew rightfully asked for a different runway assignment.  And this is where I have the problem.  AAL2 then said we need 31R and could not land on 22L.  It sounds to me like the controller told them to fly runway heading (obviously implying the landing clearance on 22L was cancelled) and from my perspective listening to the background comments on the tower frequency (“He’s coming out…”) we were trying to coordinate the runway switch.  AAL2 then gives an ultimatum, 31R NOW or we declare an emergency.  And they did. To me, it sounds like the Flight Crew had something else going on that we don’t know about.  So I defer to their decision, but I do fault them for not communicating to us what that was.  Cactus (America West/USAirways)  gets their approach cancelled. We NEVER refused AAL2’s request.  That is the part that bothers me.

While it may not be relevant in any way, several months ago at DFW another AAL flight did the same thing. 

The most important thing is for everyone to learn from this.  I don’t know what happened for certain, but I again defer to the Captain’s decision and think we need to get that side of the story first.


Skylord
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: robyul1 on May 11, 2010, 08:21:08 AM
when i fly into major cities, there have been instances where i was not content with the runway selection taking into consideration winds and operational circumstances.  But in this case, the pilot is either trying to be as sarcastic as NYC controllers are with him, maybe there's beef between the two, or the pilot is a real A-hole.   From what i get out of this recording, the pilot is abusing his right to declare emergency and most probably will be questioned  by his director of flight ops. 

Number 1:  you are on a visual, hence, you do not require any navigational instruments to make the approach since you "have the runway in sight."

Number 2: it was pretty obvious that there was no REAL emergency unless he was running low on fuel, which was never stated throughout the exchange between pilots and controller.

i just think the pilot was pulling the "ASS" card on the controller and abusing his rights to declare emergency.  I'm surprised the controller didn't ask him what his emergency actually was.  Then again, there's probably a little law somewhere stating that the pilot is not required to explain his emergency.   

PURE STUPIDITY.

THANKS
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Jason on May 11, 2010, 08:52:25 AM
Given just the recording, it's important to understand there were many variables involved and the winds may not have been the only factor in declaring the emergency.  While it is not specifically stated on this recording, the crew could have encountered a different abnormal condition which required an emergency to be declared in addition to winds being out of limits for 22L.  That said, the crew declared an emergency and deviated from the regulations to meet the extent of the emergency which is completely legal and what the crew thought was the best course of action given the circumstances in this situation.

Whether the declaration can or cannot be justified is not really our call to make.  There are too many unknowns at this point to make absolute statements.  When more details arise, we will be able to form opinions of greater detail and accuracy but until then, the speculation will continue.

Best,
Jason
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: SirIsaac787 on May 11, 2010, 03:25:17 PM
Given just the recording, it's important to understand there were many variables involved and the winds may not have been the only factor in declaring the emergency.  While it is not specifically stated on this recording, the crew could have encountered a different abnormal condition which required an emergency to be declared in addition to winds being out of limits for 22L.  That said, the crew declared an emergency and deviated from the regulations to meet the extent of the emergency which is completely legal and what the crew thought was the best course of action given the circumstances in this situation.

Whether the declaration can or cannot be justified is not really our call to make.  There are too many unknowns at this point to make absolute statements.  When more details arise, we will be able to form opinions of greater detail and accuracy but until then, the speculation will continue.

Best,
Jason

I agree but then why wasn't it just "AAL2 declaring an emergency, making the turn for 31R," rather than "If we don't get 31R, we are declaring an emergency."  If something came up, by all means declare.  But I don't understand why it would be it is either 31R or we'll be an emergency.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Cap747 on May 11, 2010, 04:17:00 PM
Whatever happened  happened, but it sure was an interresting recording!

Are we enthusiasts or not?
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: coz on May 21, 2010, 06:19:00 AM
60.2: In emergency situations which require immediate decision and action the pilot may deviate from the rules prescribed in this part to the extent required by consideration of safety. When such emergency authority is exercised, the pilot, upon request of the Administrator, shall file a written report of such deviation. In an emergency situation which results in no deviation from the rules prescribed in this part but which requires air traffic control to give priority to an aircraft, the pilot of such aircraft shall make a report within 48 hours of such emergency situation to the nearest regional office of the Administrator.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: AviatorJud on May 23, 2010, 07:40:03 PM
So...any updates on this?  Surely somebody found out something. 
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: aviator_06 on May 24, 2010, 03:53:03 PM
Great Catch!
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: mrezee on June 05, 2010, 11:49:58 PM
What an asshole.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: ridejumpfly on June 06, 2010, 02:10:16 PM
To add some info on this..  I checked the flight history in SABRE (AAL reservation system that shows the out and off, on and in times.  The flight was push back to take off in less then 10 min in LAX.  After declaring the emergency he arrived at the gate over 10 min early.  If there was a min fuel issue it would be very strange.  

-Ridejumpfly
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: mikenftsmith on June 06, 2010, 05:12:10 PM
What an asshole.
 

I don't think we need to start making  disparaging comments about the crew,we were not there. The pilot in command determined his aircraft was in a emergency situation and according to the FAR's exercised his right to land his aircraft on the runway he felt necessary. Until we see a report or here from the crew involved we haft too leave it at that.   
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: AviatorJud on June 07, 2010, 02:24:34 AM
What an asshole.
 

I don't think we need to start making  disparaging comments about the crew,we were not there. The pilot in command determined his aircraft was in a emergency situation and according to the FAR's exercised his right to land his aircraft on the runway he felt necessary. Until we see a report or here from the crew involved we haft too leave it at that.   

Yes, well, due to the resourcefulness of the members here and the length of this thread, I think we have a pretty good picture of the situation.  While we obviously can't and won't know everything that went on in that cockpit, using the available information and our brains, I think we can REASONABLY conclude that for SOME reason the pilot was in a foul mood and decided to use his unquestionable power to declare an emergency simply to expedite the landing of his plane.  Similar to when cops turn on their emergency lights to avoid traffic.  I believe it was an irresponsible act that affected and possibly endangered everyone else in the airspace.  Further, any pilot who declares a real emergency and is still able to clearly communicate gives SOME idea of what the emergency is.  I've listened to hundreds of them, and SOME information about the nature is always given.  Clearly the tower was of the opinion it wasn't real too because they didn't even ask.  Based on everything in this thread, including my personal interpretation of the pilot's tone of voice and attitude over the radio, all of this is not at all an unreasonable assumption.  But of course it is still just an assumption.  Of course, there will always be people who will defend one side or the other in the face of overwhelming evidence either way.      Besides...a lot of AA pilots really are assholes.  :wink:
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: SooLineRob on June 08, 2010, 03:43:26 PM
Besides...a lot of AA pilots really are assholes.  :wink:

Nice. Thanks for stopping by!
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: Eric M on June 08, 2010, 05:17:28 PM
I'm sure AviatorJud meant his last editorial remark with humor, and I took it as such - but it got me to thinking that there are unpleasant pilots all over the place. Does American have more than their fair share?

Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: AviatorJud on June 08, 2010, 08:09:05 PM
I'm sure AviatorJud meant his last editorial remark with humor, and I took it as such - but it got me to thinking that there are unpleasant pilots all over the place. Does American have more than their fair share?



Indeed, it was meant as humor.  However, anecdotally, AA does seem to tip the scale for some reason.  But maybe that's just too much hangar talk.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: idriveplanes on March 22, 2011, 05:05:07 PM
Someone's recentish post mentioning the chock-to-chock time for the flight was a very interesting point, and it helped the opinion that fuel = no issue.  This clip has interested me for some time now.

The irritation in the pilot's voice is there, and I have enjoyed this thread's abundance of ideas towards figuring out the cause of his irritation!

I'm a skydive pilot.  My vote: the pilot may have had a genuine issue, but had limited regard for the operational effects he was incurring, solely due to his inefficient communicating.

If there's any follow-up to this incident, I may need help finding it please.
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: ZBWDO on May 30, 2012, 10:23:57 PM
Anyone ever hear more about what happened to this pilot?
Title: Re: Weird JFK Emergency Yesterday around 5:10 PM "give me 31R or I'll declare"
Post by: flyflyfly on May 31, 2012, 02:07:56 PM
In another forum someone claimed the pilot was temporarily grounded without pay for this one. Hearsay though. And I can't even find the forum post now... But even if - it would still be hearsay. :wink: