2021_02

New Issue of The Controller

Thanks to the hard work of our Editor Thom Metzger (USA NATCA) and his editorial team, we're proud to present the latest electronic issue of The Controller. As usual, our magazine is available on a variety of platforms:

  • The IFATCA website: https://the-controller.ifatca.org, where issues can be read from within your browser. While this can be read on mobile devices, it does require you to be online (and your provider may charge you for this).
    For the best experience, we recommend to select the full screen option via the toolbar on top of the pages.
  • Mobile Devices (tablets): We use issuu.com for the best experience on mobile devices. The issuu.com app, which allows you to read The Controller offline on your tablet can be downloaded via https://ios.the-controller.net, https://android.the-controller.net and https://windows.the-controller.net. Best of all, the issues are now available for free - look for IFATCA once you've started the app.
  • PDF Version: download the pdf version of the latest issue. This file is about 4Mb in size and requires a PDF viewer to be able to read it. A higher quality version is available via this link (18Mb).
  • For Member Associations: a print-ready PDF version (about 18Mb) can be downloaded that can eventually be printed for your members. Alternatively, issuu.com also offers a printing service. Please visit https://issuu.com/ifatca for more details. Associations that have problems to download these files can contact our Montréal office via [email protected].

Besides being free, an electronic issue also offers new possibilities to interact with the content. Links in articles and adverts can be clicked and open to the relevant page

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Unstable Approaches Survey by IATA/CANSO/IFALPA/IFATCA

Unstable Approaches Survey by IATA/CANSO/IFALPA/IFATCA


The reduction of Unstable Approaches is an ongoing objective of the aviation industry, since they are a contributing factor to accidents like Runway Excursions, Hard Landings, Controlled Flight into Terrain (CFIT), and Tail Strikes among other accident categories. In our ongoing effort to help the industry implement the most current best practices to achieve this goal, IATA/CANSO/IFALPA and IFATCA, together with other industry partners, are working on a Safety Risk Assessment to evaluate current safety barriers and propose new safety enhancements.

 

To support this industry effort, IATA, CANSO, IFALPA and IFATCA kindly request your participation in our survey that will help us gauge the effectiveness of the 2017 IATA/CANSO/IFALPA/IFATCA Unstable Approaches: Risk Mitigation Policies, Procedures and Best Practices, and with your help, find opportunities to improve and update its content. The survey should not take more than 10 minutes to complete.

 

We invite you to take part in this survey. To participate, please click on the link below.

 

We value your feedback.

Participate in the Survey!

Click on the button below to access ths survey:
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Bulletin 1 - Mitigating Human Factors Hazards in the Context of the Operating Environment during and post COVID-19

Bulletin 1 – Mitigating Human Factors Hazards in the Context of the Operating Environment during and post COVID-19


Many aviation-related organizations have taken steps to help crews, dispatchers and controllers deal with changes in the physical and psychosocial environment owing to the impact of COVID-19, both at work and in their personal lives. Maintaining this focus on COVID-related human factors challenges and staying proactive is important to ensuring continued high levels of safety as operations ramp up. Appropriate resources and tools to minimize the mental health impact of COVID-19, including peer support programs, will play an important role in ensuring staff well-being throughout the recovery. 

Restarting a complex system, such as aviation, is not a linear process. The impact on staff in airlines, ATCOs and the aviation supply chain could lead to a different risk landscape which can, by extension, introduce new operational and safety challenges. Additionally, traffic recovery is expected to be volatile and the ramp up may be different than anticipated. Therefore, local safety management systems (SMS) should address COVID-19 related concerns including the biological and psycho-social risks and their interactions with aviation safety. In addition, creating a supportive environment for aviation personnel can help maintain self-wellbeing. 

To better understand the impact that post COVID-19 operations-related challenges could have on human factors, CANSO, IFATCA, IFALPA and IATA conducted a safety risk assessment. The safety risk assessment (SRA) example, provided at the end of this bulletin, was reviewed, and used to shape a webinar organized on 20 May 2021. This joint bulletin is an update of Bulletin 1, which was issued in 2020, and is a result of the revised SRA and the webinar.

Download the bulletin

Click on the button below to download the bulletin:
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Bulletin 2 - Maintaining Competency and Training During Recovery

Bulletin 2 – Maintaining Competency and Training During Recovery


CANSO, IFATCA, IFALPA and IATA are delighted to announce the publication of their second Bulletin (re-edited), of the webinar series "Safely Navigating the Industry Recovery", following the webinar held on 22 April 2021. The webinar focused on on the respective measures airlines and ANSPs are taking as well as best practices that can be implemented during the recovery phase with regard to competency and training of aviation personnel. 

Download the bulletin

Click on the button below to download the bulletin:
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Bulletin 5 - Occupational Health and Safety in the Context of COVID

Bulletin 5 – Occupational Health and Safety in the Context of COVID


CANSO, IFATCA, IFALPA and IATA are delighted to announce the publication of their 5th Bulletin, of the webinar series "Safely Navigating the Industry Recovery", following the webinar held on 18 March 2021. The webinar focused on affected ability of operational staff to go back to normal working environments, and this bulletin provides an overview of the topics discussed, key figures and an example of a SRA to manage OHS-related issues in the workplace.

Download the bulletin

Click on the button below to download the bulletin:
2021_01

New Issue of The Controller

Thanks to the hard work of our Editor Thom Metzger (USA NATCA) and his editorial team, we're proud to present the latest electronic issue of The Controller. As usual, our magazine is available on a variety of platforms:

  • The IFATCA website: https://the-controller.ifatca.org, where issues can be read from within your browser. While this can be read on mobile devices, it does require you to be online (and your provider may charge you for this).
    For the best experience, we recommend to select the full screen option via the toolbar on top of the pages.
  • Mobile Devices (tablets): We use issuu.com for the best experience on mobile devices. The issuu.com app, which allows you to read The Controller offline on your tablet can be downloaded via https://ios.the-controller.net, https://android.the-controller.net and https://windows.the-controller.net. Best of all, the issues are now available for free - look for IFATCA once you've started the app.
  • PDF Version: download the pdf version of the latest issue. This file is about 4Mb in size and requires a PDF viewer to be able to read it. A higher quality version is available via this link (18Mb).
  • For Member Associations: a print-ready PDF version (about 18Mb) can be downloaded that can eventually be printed for your members. Alternatively, issuu.com also offers a printing service. Please visit https://issuu.com/ifatca for more details. Associations that have problems to download these files can contact our Montréal office via [email protected].

Besides being free, an electronic issue also offers new possibilities to interact with the content. Links in articles and adverts can be clicked and open to the relevant page

Healthcare cure concept with a hand in blue medical gloves holdi

IFATCA Position Paper on on COVID-19 Vaccination of ATS Staff

IFATCA has issued this position paper in its wish to continue efforts to help combat the COVID-19 pandemic and provide advice to our Member Associations.

IFATCA wishes to address growing concerns and potential questions regarding the issues raised around COVID-19 vaccination and our profession. We invite Member Associations to reflect on their response to the topic and provide advice to their membership based on facts and collaboration with authorities and employers.

It is applicable to those states that have authorised the use of registered COVID-19 vaccines and those that are preparing to do so. IFATCA encourages all States to facilitate the availability of COVID-19 for individuals that wish to be inoculated.

Further, IFATCA is of the opinion that whilst Air Traffic Services (ATS) personnel should rightly be considered as essential workers within the national critical infrastructure, it should not necessarily mean that ATS staff require priority over other essential workers, such as health professionals, who face a direct and increased risk of infection when compared to the rest of the population. Rather, a pragmatic list of priority, based on the requirement to ensure that the aviation industry may continue to provide crucial logistical support to the overall pandemic response, should be created.

While it is recognised that a vaccine not only protects the individual but indirectly also protects others, IFATCA recommends that the decision on whether to receive a vaccine remains an individual and confidential choice. As such, it should not be included in any licensing, aviation related medical certification process or requirement. In deciding, IFATCA encourages that ATS personnel should accept the recommendations and advice of their medical professionals and relevant authorities.

Member Associations can actively ensure that their members are adequately informed. Care should be taken to avoid disinformation which is prevalent during times of crisis. To counter this, it is important to share information that comes from reliable sources, such as health authorities and the World Health Organisation (WHO). Only trust official information sources and credible media outlets.

Efficient and timely regulatory decision making may have an important impact in mitigating the COVID-19 pandemic and its effects on the aviation industry. National Regulatory Authorities (NRA) are encouraged to develop and implement regulatory methods to assess the quality, safety and efficacy of vaccines using a risk-based approach as described by the WHO.

A protocol should be developed for all medical certificate holders wishing to be vaccinated against COVID-19 valid for the period prior to, during and after the actual inoculation. Ideally this protocol would be jointly developed between Member Association, employer and NRA. The protocol should contain rostering consequences. These constraints, at the very least, should address whether a period of time should elapse after inoculation and before returning to operational duties. As an example, the U.S. F.A.A. require the individual ATCO to avoid operational duties until 48 hours after the inoculation. On the other hand, many states recognise the COVID 19 vaccine as a ‘standard’ vaccination and therefore operational duties may resume directly afterwards. IFATCA, therefore, strongly recommends efficient and robust communication between all parties in order to avoid confusion and increase trust in the process.

Adequate rostering planning must ensure that in whichever scenario, both related directly to ATS personnel vaccination processes and also to that related to individual state transport policy, the ability to respond to air traffic demand remains a priority.

As in other matters, IFATCA promotes the exchange of information between Member Associations to stimulate the concept of best practices within air traffic control.

ifatca-ifalpa-joint-statement-on-tcas

Joint Statement by IFALPA and IFATCA on TCAS

TCAS Needs Your Help!

Following the recent EUROCONTROL report on TCAS RA compliance: https://www.skybrary.aero/bookshelf/books/5842.pdf, IFALPA and IFATCA feel the need to send a reminder to the pilot and controller community.

The Eurocontrol study analysed radar data of TCAS RA events taken over a 12-month period over the core area of Europe and reports that only 38% of the RAs were followed correctly, and that 34% even manoeuvred in the opposite direction. The results are in line with previous studies and the trend remains alarming.

While RAs are rare events, when they happen the situation may be critical, and correct action must be taken promptly. Recurrent training should improve flight crew and controllers understanding of how TCAS works, how they should respond to RAs, and the limitations of TCAS. However, monitoring programmes have identified several situations where pilot responses were incorrect.

Aircraft operators and training providers should consider making these the focus of recurrent training sessions. For controllers, the biggest concern is that they could interfere with TCAS by issuing instructions opposite to an RA, which the pilots might then decide to follow instead of the RA. That said, it should be clear that TCAS is a last-resort collision avoidance system, NOT a separation assurance system.

RECOMMENDATIONS FOR PILOTS

  • Always follow the RAIf you decide not to follow an RA for whatever reason, never ever manoeuvre in the opposite direction. Consider switching to “TA only”if the situation or technical limitations require it (e.g. local approach procedures or engine failure).
  • Do not assume the aircraft you see outside is the one on the TCAS display and vice versa.
  • If your aircraft is equipped with Auto-TCAS, keep the autopilot connected but closely monitor the manoeuvre.
  • If you receive an instruction during an active RA, let the controller know: “Unable, TCAS RA”
  • Report following an RA to ATC as soon as possible. This is essential for ATC to stop issuing instructions.
  • Report the “Clear of conflict” and your intentionsas soon as possible.
  • To prevent unnecessary RAs, plan to reduce your rate of climb/descent to max 1500ft/min during the last 1000ft before a level off (unless instructed by ATC to do otherwise).

RECOMMENDATIONS FOR CONTROLLERS

  • Once a pilot has announced an RA, do not issue any more instructions, just acknowledge(i.e. “Roger”)
  • If required to pass traffic information (by pilot or by local procedures), preferably use phraseology using relative altitudes (e.g. 1000 ft above or below) instead of mentioning the altitudes or Flight levels of the intruder(s).
  • To prevent unnecessary RAs, it is not recommended to assign vertical rates to be maintained until the cleared level or altitude, unless this is absolutely necessary. Pilots are not allowed to reduce a vertical rate assigned by ATC prior level off. This can result in high vertical closure rates with aircraft 1000ft above/below the cleared level and subsequent TCAS activation
2020_02

New Issue of The Controller

Thanks to the hard work of our Editor Thom Metzger (USA NATCA) and his editorial team, we're proud to present the latest electronic issue of The Controller. As usual, our magazine is available on a variety of platforms:

  • The IFATCA website: https://the-controller.ifatca.org, where issues can be read from within your browser. While this can be read on mobile devices, it does require you to be online (and your provider may charge you for this).
    For the best experience, we recommend to select the full screen option via the toolbar on top of the pages.
  • Mobile Devices (tablets): We use issuu.com for the best experience on mobile devices. The issuu.com app, which allows you to read The Controller offline on your tablet can be downloaded via https://ios.the-controller.net, https://android.the-controller.net and https://windows.the-controller.net. Best of all, the issues are now available for free - look for IFATCA once you've started the app.
  • PDF Version: download the pdf version of the latest issue. This file is about 4Mb in size and requires a PDF viewer to be able to read it. A higher quality version is available via this link (25Mb).
  • For Member Associations: a print-ready PDF version (about 25Mb) can be downloaded that can eventually be printed for your members. Alternatively, issuu.com also offers a printing service. Please visit https://issuu.com/ifatca for more details. Associations that have problems to download these files can contact our Montréal office via [email protected].

Besides being free, an electronic issue also offers new possibilities to interact with the content. Links in articles and adverts can be clicked and open to the relevant pages.

Pilots in the cockpit

Bulletin #3: Safely Navigating the Industry Restart

The COVID-19 pandemic has had an unprecedented impact on the aviation industry and its stakeholders. In order to help facilitate the industry restart in these challenging times,  the Civil Air Navigation Services Organization (CANSO), International Federation of Air Traffic Controllers’ Association (IFATCA), International Federation of Air Line Pilots’ Associations (IFALPA) and International Air Transport Association (IATA) recently held a webinar on the topic of Pilot & ATCO Interface during Restart. Following the webinar, IATA has drafted a bulletin highlighting the main points covered during the webinar.

IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER: Safety Risk Assessments (SRAs) allow for the identification of hazards, risks and control measures associated with a given event or change. The example provided in this bulletin is for information only and is NOT a replacement for a proper SRA taking into account the local environment for which it will be used.

IFATCA will not be responsible for how the assessment is carried out, and is not responsible for the use of the example provided. It should be noted that nothing within the example provided overrides any requirements needed to comply with national regulation and approved procedures.

The assessment is a continuous, live process and must be monitored and audited, reviewed and revised with any change occurring. Any change could lead to new risks and hazards needing to be considered and no liability rests with IFATCA in this respect. The assessment should be programmed for review at appropriate intervals.

Bulletin 3 – Pilot & ATCO Interface during Restart

Target Audience: Pilots, ATCOs, ATC/OCC Unit Managers

Download the bulletin using the link below:

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