Primarily for general aviation discussion, but other aviation topics are also welcome.
By johnm
#1827392
I have been hearing a bit about the CAA of late. I know I keep banging on about the all pervading triumph of form over substance but it does seem to be affecting the CAA and we should be worried, because it's a reflection of their competence, or rather the lack of it.

The latest is that on ramp checks they are complaining about paint chips on components as a symptom of poor maintenance :roll:
#1827431
Shoestring Flyer wrote:Do we know if any heads have rolled at the CAA over this dangerous fiasco?


Undoubtedly the most serious airspace infringement in recent years a major London airport holding pattern and entry /exit waypoint.Thousands of airline passengers will have been endangered if the usual infringing traffic bubbles so rigidly enforced against GA were taken into account.Of course the LATC controllers were blissfully unaware of a non transponding target so no CAIT protection.Whilst this was occurring the CAA officials were enjoying the hospitality of the errant operator.

With so much recent bad publicity having examined the flood of recent bad publicity the senior CAA management have circled the waggons around their incompetent colleagues and now redact all communications of staff names and signing by job title only!
Fly safe because we need to! Regards Stampe.
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By Rob P
#1827444
Stampe wrote:It would be hoped given the damning findings of this report that all drone activity in the U.K. be suspended until all the findings of the report are acted upon.


Oi! I have just paid nine quid to renew my licence to drone on. :evil:

Rob P
#1827467
This is very serious incompetance by the CAA and must call into question how the other Drone trials that are taking place this year at Goodwood and Oban etc. are being scrutinised by the CAA, both at an equipment being used level and also the credentials of the companies involved in these trials.

What is also amazing that the general media seemingly haven't yet got hold of this!
Last edited by Shoestring Flyer on Fri Feb 19, 2021 12:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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#1827468
The report does detail some of the changes the CAA have already made to their team / personnel and processes so I suspect that some of this wouldn't happen again.
To me, the fault lies by far with the operator, who broke the law directly and their own safety case on multiple occasions. If the CAA states stipulations, and they aren't followed, its the operator's fault.

Some of it is balance decisions though - we shouldn't expect (and wouldn't want) the CAA to gold plate everything. This was a prototype, using prototype build quality, by a small company, for a single demo. To me its right that the CAA should be able to trust what is sent to them, then the fault becomes that of the operator if they don't follow their own procedures. There is a question of checking that those procedures and systems are complied with, but I wouldn't expect that to happen for every operator on every occasion.

The fact is, the mitigations to the risk of those on the ground worked. NATS were informed about the runaway drone, likely before it entered the Class-A, so if there had been holding aircraft they could have been moved elsewhere. Lets not bash the CAA too much. We bash them when they aren't flexible and we bash them when they are.
#1827473
Shoestring Flyer wrote:Do we know if any heads have rolled at the CAA over this dangerous fiasco?

Given how the CAA deals with a, in relative terms, simple human error of not reporting entering an ATZ, I assume you mean that literally to be commensurate with the multiple failures of competence? :wink: Seems to me from @patowalker's link the punishment is being tasked with overseeing GA in addition to the UAV unit? :evil:
#1827479
'Nobody died'.....
Nobody died either as a consequence of minor airspace infringements in recent years, yet which often resulted in Draconian enforcement action by the CAA including licence suspension, loss of Display Authorisation, 'mandatory' online exam etc, all seemingly with disregard to due legal process.
We are now faced with serious allegations of dishonesty and ineptitude resulting in one of the most serious airspace busts in recent memory.
I would be interested to see an 'overlay' of the things approximate trajectory v airline traffic at the time. Bear in mind that this thing ascended helicopter-like and fell like a piano, thereby preventing any see and avoid action, if indeed the weather conditions might otherwise have made this possible.
Is the boot now firmly on the other foot?
HP
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#1827481
riverrock wrote:Some of it is balance decisions though - we shouldn't expect (and wouldn't want) the CAA to gold plate everything. This was a prototype, using prototype build quality, by a small company, for a single demo. To me its right that the CAA should be able to trust what is sent to them, then the fault becomes that of the operator if they don't follow their own procedures. There is a question of checking that those procedures and systems are complied with, but I wouldn't expect that to happen for every operator on every occasion.

Mmm, is it right to trust, not only an unknown operator and aircraft, but one from the other side of the world? If this operator wasn't deserving of checks, what scenario would be? :?
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#1827484
Let's not forget the professionalism shown by the team at Goodwood airfield in all this though :thumleft:

The CAA staff have a lot of questions to answer at this point. Most worryingly the influence of DfT and other departments in promoting drone activity on economic grounds seems to be having an inappropriate impact on the CAA's regulatory role on the face of it.
#1827490
Note the nearly 2 years that took this report and its vital safety findings to be published.Note also the soothing words to the media from the CAA/NATS duopoly on an incident which must have seriously endangered thousands of air passengers.This is an attempt to make light of an incredibly serious incident.I suspect NATS had no time to react to the reports of a rogue non transponding drone.I would expect to hear NATS bleating on about bus loads of traumatised snowflake controllers being taken off duties for counselling.
Fly safe and keep a good lookout! Stampe
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By Cub
#1827499
Stampe wrote:Note the nearly 2 years that took this report and its vital safety findings to be published.Note also the soothing words to the media from the CAA/NATS duopoly on an incident which must have seriously endangered thousands of air passengers.This is an attempt to make light of an incredibly serious incident.I suspect NATS had no time to react to the reports of a rogue non transponding drone.I would expect to hear NATS bleating on about bus loads of traumatised snowflake controllers being taken off duties for counselling.
Fly safe and keep a good lookout! Stampe


I was searching around for any NATS comment on the incident and couldn't find any. Could you point me to it Stampe?

Edited: Found it!

A spokeswoman for NATS said: "NATS has well-rehearsed processes in place for events such as this and when we were made aware of this incident, our controllers took immediate action to ensure flights in the vicinity were alerted. Our priority is the safety of all airspace users."


Kind of what I would have expected and exactly correct. Not quite sure what people were expecting to be said?