Re: ATC on passengers' headsets

From:         kls@ohare.Chicago.COM (Karl Swartz)
Organization: Chicago Software Works, Menlo Park, California
Date:         27 Aug 95 14:37:18 
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>I know that on United, at least domestically, channel 9 on ur audio
>selector panel used to bring up VHF COMM #1, the primary nav radio.

It's on channel 9 except as follows:

    737-200	most or all don't have audio so obviously no ATC
    747-238B	(ex-Qantas) don't have this capability
    747-400	ATC is on channel 14
    DC-8-71	ATC was on channel 4

>Its operation was subject to captains discretion, but everytime i asked,
>which was every time I flew UAL, i was never turned down.

Shuttle flights almost invariably have it on before I even ask.  I
almost always ask, and I'd say about half the time it's either on or
they'll turn it on.  If not, sometimes it's a curt "no" or "we don't
do that."  I once asked a captain why and he said he'd been flying a
DC-10 that had an engine fail about an hour out from the destination,
LAX.  Some clown was listening in on channel 9 and used the AirFone
to call all the TV stations in Los Angeles who were on hand to make
a media frenzy out of an entirely unremarkable event.

Speaking of DC-10s and ATC on channel 9, I noted with some interest
in the transcripts from UA 232 -- the DC-10 which crashed at Sioux
City, Iowa several years ago -- that Capt. Haynes turned off channel
9 when it became clear that they were in serious trouble.

Karl Swartz	|Home
Moderator of sci.aeronautics.airliners -- Unix/network work pays the bills