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Why would anyone talk to the NTSB?

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Why would anyone talk to the NTSB?

Old 11-02-2009, 06:59 PM
  #1  
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Default Why would anyone talk to the NTSB?

In any accident investigation, you know each group's role. The company is looking to improve safety, but they also are looking at discipline issues. The FAA is looking to improve safety, but they also are looking at certificate issues. The NTSB, they are supposed to be Switzerland. They have no other role but to improve safety, they don't care about discipline or certificate issues.

You know that you can tell the NTSB anything and it will only be used for one thing: to enhance safety. Spill your guts, tell all your secrets, be totally honest.

Well at least that's how it used to be. The ink wasn't even dry on the statements of the NWA 188 pilots before the NTSB goes blabbing to everyone who will listen. I thought this was supposed to be a safety investigation and not another episode of Jon and Kate + 8. How did the NTSB's actions do ANYTHING to improve flight safety?

I don't want to argue about the aircrew's actions or inactions, that has been beat to death.

What I would like to know is why anyone would want to talk to them ever again? If the NTSB will publish my statement whenever they feel like it, shouldn't I just say, "Hey, talk to my lawyer, and then leave the room."

This is either a monumental blunder on the part of the NTSB, or they have decided that they want to just examine bent pieces of metal and write off any input from pilots. I don't trust them now and I will not trust them until they either fix this mess or until Congress puts laws in place to tie their hands.

I am wondering if anyone else feels the same way.
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Old 11-02-2009, 07:20 PM
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+1
There WILL be a lot of airmen (at least those with a shred of self preservation) who will look any FED (FBI, local cops, TSA, or agents from CONTROL) in the eye, and rightly proclaim "before making any official statement, I wish to exercise my rights to legal council with my union representative". Has anybody else noticed the grammatical errors in the certificate revocation letters that have been made public. And who is 'northwestern airlines'? And when, exactly, was the last time any certificate revocation letter made the news headlines. I suppose the said airmen can take comfort that their certificate numbers were redacted two of the three places that they were published. Can you say "identity theft"? This smacks of the same FAA that pulled Bob Hoover's certificate...I'll gladly point out that the circumstances were drastically different, however....The FEDs decided on a course of action BEFORE the facts were gathered, and due process was allowed to take it's course. That's what really ticks me off with respect to this event...
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Old 11-02-2009, 07:26 PM
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Well the way this was all so hastily done I think the pilots will have no trouble winning their certificates (and possibly jobs) back on appeal. Perhaps it was done like that on purpose to make the public feel warm and fuzzy but not actually hang these two pilots out to dry.

Not that I'm condoning what they did, but I can't say I would have made them lose everything either.
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Old 11-02-2009, 07:28 PM
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Good post. When people ask me what I think really happened (which seems to be about twice a day), I tell them that the pilots only made one critical error; opening their mouths- oh, and leaving their transponder on
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Old 11-02-2009, 07:36 PM
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Anyone with an ALPA card, read the back!

FSAP ans ASAP are great tools for the industry to recognize trends and bootstrap those stats back into training or new regulations. The price of self-disclosure was that the FSAP data wouldn't be used to punish a crew (provided the deviation was covered).

After the latest high-profile incident, one thing is for certain. All crews should know the words: "No Comment"

Keep your mouth shut and call your union, and your company.
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Old 11-02-2009, 08:28 PM
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Originally Posted by iPilot View Post
Well the way this was all so hastily done I think the pilots will have no trouble winning their certificates (and possibly jobs) back on appeal. Perhaps it was done like that on purpose to make the public feel warm and fuzzy but not actually hang these two pilots out to dry.

Not that I'm condoning what they did, but I can't say I would have made them lose everything either.
If I remember what I've read about administrative law and the FAA's revocation process, an emergency ticket-punching is for ongoing conduct that poses an imminent hazard to life or property. Pretty sure that they're caught they won't be doing that conduct anymore, and Deltawest have suspended them from further flight ops — they did this BEFORE the FAA got the shredder out.

Call your union, your company, and your AOPA Legal Services Plan attorney (you are a member, right? )
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Old 11-02-2009, 09:16 PM
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The Distant Ocean: Never talk to any police officer under any circumstances
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Old 11-02-2009, 10:45 PM
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WOW! What a great video. You learn something new every day!!!

Denny
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Old 11-03-2009, 04:33 AM
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Originally Posted by SomedayRJ View Post
If I remember what I've read about administrative law and the FAA's revocation process, an emergency ticket-punching is for ongoing conduct that poses an imminent hazard to life or property. Pretty sure that they're caught they won't be doing that conduct anymore, and Deltawest have suspended them from further flight ops — they did this BEFORE the FAA got the shredder out.

Call your union, your company, and your AOPA Legal Services Plan attorney (you are a member, right? )

Its routine for Delta to suspend a crew when a incident happens. There really is no other option. Are they going to let them fly there next trip? The suspension in most cases works in the pilots favor. Delta suspends the pilot and sends them back to the school house for a couple of sims and retraining. When the FAA has its hearing Delta shows the steps they have taken and training the pilots have received and that is often the end of the story. The pilots go back to the line and everyone is happen. Its a system that has worked well and saved a lot of pilots from much worse punishments from the FAA.

On the subject of the role of the company, FAA and NTSB in actual accident investigations I can tell you that you have the priorities wrong. With the company and FAA the number one priority is reduce our legal liability. The 2nd priority is reduce our legal liability. The actual truth and cause of the accident are way down the priority list. The NTSB is supposed to be neutral and seek the cause of the accident. In reality they come under enormous pressure from the Airline, aircraft builder, FAA and any other party that might get sued. The pressure? Reduce our legal liability. If you seeing a trend here you will start to understand the process.
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Old 11-03-2009, 04:41 AM
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The FAA has been doing emergency revocation for about everything for years. The stated goal is to prevent you from doing the same thing again. What happens is pilots who fly for a living can't make any money and fold during appeal process.

What you have to remember is flying is not a right but a privilege governed under administrative law. The deck is stacked against you from the start.
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