Re: External inspection

Date:         23 Dec 98 03:52:38 
From:         MJones <rmjones@cyberhighway.net>
References:   1 2
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Karl Swartz wrote:
>>IFR would add some complications, but AFAIK, it was VFR.

>According to the transcript you refered to, the flight took off at about
>42 minutes past midnight, with the final recording at 01:11:16.  Hardly
>VFR conditions.

Argh.  I didn't key on the times.  (Are they GMT/Zulu?  That would make it
20:11, but still dark, or at best late dusk.)  I have to admit assuming
that this is the accident caught on video during daylight hours.  Seems not
to be the case.

>>Likewise by asking ATC for altitude info, since that altitude info
>>would come from the aircraft's (erroneous) Mode-C transponder, the
>>crew showed a lack of understanding of very basic precepts.

>True, though it's a lot easier to remember that while sitting in a
>comfortable office than when you're in the heat of battle, over the
>Pacific in the dark of night, with your key instruments having gone
>nuts.

I have to respectfully disagree with you on this one.  It didn't take me
1/2 a second to realize this mistake, and I'm only a mid-time private
pilot.

>It's also increasingly the case that flight crews are trained
>in managing the automation, sacrificing basic systems knowledge, so
>they aren't equipped to deal with what happens when those systems
>fail you.

Yeah, I'm probably being too hard on them.

Mike Jones