Re: Why Russians airlines usually make no-ILS approach/landings?

Date:         20 Aug 97 02:38:33 
From:         kls@ohare.Chicago.COM (Karl Swartz)
Organization: Chicago Software Works, Menlo Park, California
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>There is some merit to the language problem, but it is ridiculous to say
>they clear the taxiways when Aeroflot flights arrives.  This is nonsense -
>I've been in the traffic mix many many times with Aeroflot flights into
>JFK and ORD.

A bit of an exageration, but not entirely untrue.  I've heard from
several pilots that they make a nice big hole in the airspace around
SFO when Aeroflot flies in.  Part of the problem apparently is that
Aeroflot has a navigator, who handles all radio communications, thus
keeping the pilots somewhat out of the loop, reducing situational

On the other hand, I was once on a United flight from SFO, with ATC on
the cabin audio system, listening to an Aeroflot Il-62 threading its
way out to 28L (SFO's longest runway) when most traffic was departing
on the usual 1L and 1R.  There was perhaps a bit of confusion, both in
communicating that they really did need 28L and also just finding
their way about an unfamiliar traffic when they didn't have the luxury
of following someone else.  On the whole, though, it seemed like an
entirely professional exchange and they seemed competent enough.

That's more than I can say for a Garuda MD-11 a few miles ahead of my
United SFO-LAX flight on another occasion.  On approach, it was clear
that the Garuda pilot and ATC were not communicating.  ATC: "Garuda
XXX, what's your minimum airspeed?"  Garuda: "Garuda XXX, uh, clear
for landing?"  After a bit, the controller's frustration was apparent
and finally he just gave up until the guy landed, keeping other
traffic safely out of Garuda's way.  (No, the Garuda pilot did not
have a Russian accent!)

Karl Swartz	|Home
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