"False Alarms" That Aren't False

Started by wuzafuzz, November 05, 2011, 11:39:20 am

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wuzafuzz

This is exactly why I've actually had arguments with GTL's who focus their ELT searches on airport ramps, and can't seem to comprehend why we should take bearings from off the airport.  In my experience too many of them have assumed it's a false alarm because they are sent to "an ELT heard at po-dunk airport." 

Aircraft accidents really do happen on and near airports.  It's true there are many false alarms, but once and IC dispatches ground or UDF teams they have to work past the "nuisance ELT" mind-set.  Work the signal properly, every time. 

The story reports that people heard an ELT, presumably Tollett's, but didn't report it.  It's a tragic reminder of why we shouldn't treat airport ELT's as false alarms.

http://www.heraldonline.com/2011/11/05/3502648/private-pilot-could-have-been.html
"You can't stop the signal, Mal."

RiverAux

Not particularly thrilled with the CAP guy speculating that he could have been saved. 

starshippe


   its so very sad that something like this could happen. unfortunately, this won't be the last.

   this was right on the south carolina coast. i wonder why many dozens or hundreds of commercial flights passed over this signal and just didn't bother to report it. i wonder what was so compelling as to cause the powers that be to simply turn off a working satellite based receiver system that would have alerted his life threatening situation. i wonder why the coast guard's rescue 21 system, which is supposed to monitor 121.5, failed at the task. 


bill

Eclipse

There's a lot wrong with this story, and "facts" were not apparently something the author was particularly interested in presenting.

I agree with wuzzafzz that our people need to be less "sure" about false alarms.



Buzz

There are no false alarms.  Some turn out to be less urgent than others, but only in hindsight.

SEARCH IN, SEARCH OUT.  When you go out the door of your house or Search Base, do a radio sweep -- any hit you get is just as trustworthy as one you get in the "search area."  The sortie begins when you leave the house -- while driving to the airport, look around for anything unusual.  When you reach the plane, look around.  While taxiing, look around.  When ______, LOOK AROUND.

A "search area" isn't a place that you go to and start to look, it is the area that your search has been narrowed down to over time.  When a SAR starts, the "search area" is the WHOLE PLANET.

RADIOMAN015

November 05, 2011, 06:13:08 pm #5 Last Edit: November 05, 2011, 07:44:11 pm by MIKE
Quote from: wuzafuzz on November 05, 2011, 11:39:20 am
The story reports that people heard an ELT, presumably Tollett's, but didn't report it.  It's a tragic reminder of why we shouldn't treat airport ELT's as false alarms.

http://www.heraldonline.com/2011/11/05/3502648/private-pilot-could-have-been.html

Well, this sounds like a great proactive public relations campaign for CAP to the general aviation community, how about "If you hear it, report it" slogan, along with an emphasis to either file a flight plan, or flight following, or the very least tell someone you are going flying giving an idea where you are going to and when you expect to return.  Also call them when you return.   Eventually all the older ELT's will be replaced but until then, this issue will continue to come up.

BTW at least here in the northeast, monitoring Boston ARTCC frequencies there's always commercial airliners reporting hearing ELT signals.   When I hear the report (especially after the local control tower is closed), I'll see IF I can hear it from my location.   Also informally I have some "trusted" radio hobbyists that are close to some of the other airports in the area that can give a listen when notified.   I wouldn't be too surprised in the near future, IF the state police start monitoring for ELT signals (perhaps when notified from their dispatcher) since the state police have radio scanners in all their patrol vehicles.  This would be especially important during times when our aircraft can't fly due to weather conditions.  When a potential life is at stake, everyone needs to be listening!
RM

coudano

I train my teams always,

that every single call out gets treated like a distress with a potential save

until circumstances prove otherwise

wuzafuzz

Quote from: RiverAux on November 05, 2011, 01:51:37 pm
Not particularly thrilled with the CAP guy speculating that he could have been saved.

Agreed.  That kind of speculation isn't helpful and may be completely wrong.   

I do like the awareness campaign they are considering. 
"You can't stop the signal, Mal."