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About MedMan

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  1. I ran into Mel on some Sioux Lookout fires back in the '70s. I recall he had a great sense of humor and had some great stories to tell, too.
  2. First I'm cowardly, lame and a dinosaur. Now I'm bitter about a past flying career. You people should associate more often. I'll address the dinosaur part: You start the engine. You roll on some throttle. You pull up and go. Has something changed that I'm not aware of? Added bonus: You're all still talking about the same things we talked about back in the dinosuar age. The more things change, the more things remain the same. I can't wait for all the meaningful and insightfull comments on that. Now we come to the bitter old man part of the intelligence you've gathered roaming around this board, listening to all your buddies and patting yourself on the back for a job well done: I had an absolutely enjoyable and fantastic career in aviation. I worked for the greatest company ever. That company had some of the best and most experienced engineers in the world. The owners and managers were experienced, knowledgeable and stood by their employees. I got to travel the world. I got paid to do it. I was able to parlay all of that into a successful business. When I retired from active flying, I took the years of experience and many thousands of hours obtained in bush, arctic, mountain and desert environments and used that exprience in a variety of aviation-related jobs at which I was successful. I continue to be extremely grateful for the opportunity I was given by the company that took a chance on an unknown at the beginning of my career. How's that for bitter, young fella? I applaud some of you here for your due diligence, your name calling and disparaging comments, and your sense of honour and integrity honed to a keen edge over your lifetimes. By the look of what I see and most of what I read, I am extremely happy that I don't personally know any of you. I'm sure you feel the same way, so I'd call it about even. Now run along and go give yourselves high fives all round.
  3. As I said, I wasn't party to anything HEPAC did or didn't accomplish, other than what I read in this forum. That was a good 15 or 18 years ago - almost a generation now. I was not in a position to participate at the time. If you're incapable of comprehending, that's not my problem. The thing is, you have already accomplished something. A need was identified, a petition was presented, and like-minded individuals signed. The completed petition was forwarded to the appropriate agency. Whether your efforts are recognized or not, you just accomplished something. Forgive me if I repeat myself. Whoever took the time to produce, present, sign and forward the document should be commended. As to the application of drones, I stand by my statements as they will affect your jobs. If you don't think that a pipeline company isn't thinking about using one to patrol their lines, or to become informed about new rights-of-way, you should probably go back to snoozing. Oh, and just because I prefer to remain anonymous in this obvious old-boys club where you congratulate, back-slap one another and call people childish names only means that I don't want to go back to high skool with the rest of you. Good grief. Coward? Lamer? Hide? I, and probably some others in here, think thou doth protest too much. Go fish, Mr. Kellie. I have absolutely no idea who you are, nor would I ever want to. It's embarrassing that you actually put you name to that braggart's luggage - and language. With an attitude like that, it's no wonder there were people who didn't want anything to do with HEPAC and your elitist, entitled attitude.
  4. I didn't realize I was back in high skool. I am reminded of the petty cries of "Do you know who I am?" in El Lay when the doorman turned away people in front of us. Fortunately, I have absolutely no idea who Mr. Lewis is, nor do I wish to know him. Mr. Lewis has made some valid points in some of his posts, as I'm sure many of you will agree. I have no idea whatsoever who the participants/representatives of HEPAC were, nor do I wish to know them, either; however, had I been made aware that there would be a test, perhaps I'd have studied. Unfortunately, at the time HEPAC was having a go with many of you, I was in a position that would not permit me to participate in any meaningful way; furthermore, I do recall with great amusement and some sadness the reasons given in many posts for not participating/helping out/slagging the individuals who contributed and devoted their valuable time to HEPAC; in my opinion, I believe HEPAC bit off more than it could chew by attempting to be all things to many people, rather than taking an opportunity to concentrate on achieving small victories, one at a time. However, since I was not in a position to become aware of what exactly was going on, it is, as stated, only an opinion. For example, the recent petition to Transport Canada regarding flight and duty time concerns comes to mind - although perhaps that was not an issue then (I don't recall). Should the current effort come to naught, at least when some of you are spending your five days off without pay in a bush camp, you'll have something to think about besides how you're going to spend your unaccumulated leave when you make good your escape and finally return home. I might add, again, that I have absolutely no idea what HEPAC achieved in its short tenure, but I do recall hoping that it would be successful in its efforts. I was extremely disappointed to learn that was not to be the case. I retired from active flying back in the dark ages, somewhat after the successful introduction of the turbine engine was accepted en masse by customers. The turbine engine was the last meaningful revolution introduced in the helicopter business. The next one will be the introduction of remotely piloted vehicles. For example, hydro line patrols - finished. RPVs will do the job better and more efficiently. No one will be subjected to inattentive pilots texting, listening to ipods or sniveling on the phone about their job. Texting on a line patrol? Seriously? Or was someone making that up? pipeline patrol - finished. As above. fireline mapping - finished. police helicopter patrols - finished. Why spend money on a multi-million dollar aircraft and provide dual pilots, expensive maintenance staff and facilities when an RPV can be plugged into a trouble-shooting module, diagnosed, and repaired by picking a component card from a stack? Since the things mostly don't land and night, and rarely do anything like landing in the daytime unless they're configured as an ambulance, the need is negligible for an actual helicopter. aerial detection - finished. Although, strictly speaking, not a function of a helicopter on a regular basis. Fortunately for me, I will not have to deal with the ramifications, but here's only one some of you might want to consider - especially the younger ones in the profession - because it will become prevalent during their careers: When your aircraft collides with one of those impossible RPVs, or has a near miss, or the RPV runs over you, where will the blame be placed? There's no pilot sitting in the drone. I'm thinking failure to see and avoid will be high on the list of causes, and probably number one in the causation factor by a deaf, blind, inattentive and dumb regulatory body that will be tasked to fill in nothing more than checkboxes on a final report. I have had a very successful five careers in my all-too-short life. I anticipate that number five will last me for the duration, primarily because it includes, among other things, ample amounts of chasing sunshine, blue skies and younger women. Consequently, I have absolutely no desire to dedicate and commit time to start an association, especially since one isn't needed if younger and smarter individuals than me will, on occasion, take up issues and join together to solve their problems. I do support their initiative, notwithstanding the slagging that is likely quietly going on behind their backs. I shall now sleepily go back to randomly checking the Remembrance Wall to see which old friends and colleagues I have happily outlived. See if you can keep it at least current, will you?
  5. Speaking of the small steps mentioned in my previous post: Apparently Transport Canada has a varying method of enforcement/interpretation of regulations depending on the region or company. Why is that, exactly? Why wouldn't an association of pilots take on some of those perceived variations and attempt to standardize certain of the regulations that may affect them? Some have expressed concerns about foreign pilots permitted into Canada to do the work of Canadians who are "under-qualified", or to address a perceived pilot shortage. Well, boys and girls, where is your submission to the powers that be regarding such? Wouldn't an association of pilots address the concerns mentioned in that post? It would certainly be a good starting point. Somehow, I don't think HAC will take up your plight, no matter how much time you spend praising the organization on behalf of something or other. Snoozing and yawning through the exercise won't work either. Although, I could be wrong, and perhaps HAC is working on an equitable solution for Canadian pilots to the benefit of the companies they represent. I suspect there is a certain amount of snoozing and yawning going on there also. And here's food for more thought: With the advent of drones and their coming prevalence and ease of use and operation, the companies will be behind the times still if they're not already investigating some form of drone activity for patrols, rights-of-way inspections, and other activities that may not require an expensive helicopter and its flight and maintenance crew. Or, perhaps they would prefer to have some of their customers jumpt ship to do the work on their own with a drone flown by the president's 15-year-old. Where does HAC stand on the acquisition, application and use of drones? Are they in favour? Has any company looked into obtaining a drone for any of those purposes? If so, will they be hiring a 15-year-old with video gaming experience to pilot the drone for minimum wages and a shot at cleaning the gutters on the hangar roof during a rainstorm because the hose isn't long enough? Is TC in the process of setting up any rules and regulations for drone use? If so, is there any pilot or company representation on Transport Canada's investigation/regulation committee for drone usage? The future is here, boys and girls. Where is the representation to drag you all out of the flight and duty times (and other rules and regulations) set by certain of the fire control agencies in the mid-'80s, and into the 21st century? No doubt many of you will continue to yawn and snooze your way through life, if I may be so bold as to answer my own question.
  6. Please allow me to replace my sadly misapplied word "corporate" with "company". Then you'll really get my drift. Whether you know it or not, whether you realize it or not, whether you understand it or not, whether you're willing to admit it or not, an association of pilots submitted a petition to Transport Canada. It had nothing to do with a union, nor did the petition represent or propose to be a bargaining agent. Like many others, you pretend to misunderstand the meaning of the word association, and use the word union interchangeably. Of course, for those who can't or won't be bothered to understand the difference, you make it sound like some sort of union organizing. That ought to put fear into the minds of many, which I'm certain was the intent of your post. Like anything else, the more the subject is discussed, the more it will become something for serious consideration. Imagine how the petition organizers will feel if and/or when the results of their initiative are positve. Such an association of pilots who put their name to that petition, I would think, would be very appreciative of the positive outcome for their efforts. They may even attempt to complete some other task collectively. Wouldn't that be the cat's rear-end? Small steps.
  7. How interesting. Now how long before the slagging begins by those with corporate interests?
  8. Good grief. What a load. If you all had been intelligent enough to start an Association, foreign job ads would be a good place for it to start with the questioning of need, abilities and a letter submitted to the appropriate government Ministers and lawmakers. Unfortunately, you're all left to complain in a forum where lawyers rule. Good luck with that one. Now go tape your keyboards over and go back to sleep.
  9. It's extremely unfortunate that many of you have chosen to shoot the messenger - namely Mr. Lewis - by means of insults, rather than take an opportunity to refute intelligently what he has written. For those of you who crazily deny that Mr. Lewis and his association will ever represent you, you might want to consider that if you're not one who consented to contributing to his particular survey, then, in fact, his survey does not represent you. On the other hand, if you responded to the survey done on this web site, you are now a member of an association dedicated to making changes to the regulations, and/or, are part of an association of like-minded individuals. Duh.
  10. It amuses me greatly to read how terrified most of you are of anything with the word "Association" in it. It leads me to suspect that some of you could well be shilling for owners and managers. In the Canadian helicopter industry, nothing and no one is more scared and afraid of a pilots' and/or engineers' association than company owners and managers, even though they are utterly and completely ignorant of how such an endeavour would function for the benefit of its members and the companies they work for.
  11. My name isn't Fred. And even if it was, you quoted the wrong statement. Here's the one you should memorize: I bolded the essential parts. Can I make it any plainer for ya there, skippy?
  12. Good luck with the petition, but you're much too late to the prom. Even the ugly girls are not going to dance with you at this late date.
  13. It only takes one - or, at most, two - to form an association of like-minded individuals. Such an association may call itself anything they choose. Furthermore, if you don't want anything to do with it, don't consider yourself a member - which you so obviously aren't. Speaking of all of you who like to represent yourselves, how did your presentations regarding flight and duty times for helicopter pilots go over the course of the last working group? Did any of you have any thoughts or concerns about the current 40-year-old flight and duty time requirements? Did your concerns get addressed by the working group? Did your concerns get addressed by anyone? Were they included in the final report?
  14. I must agree with Mr. Lewis' assessment of Some Collection of Miscellaneous Company's (SCMC) burning desire to be exempted from limits on pilot flight and duty times. He makes some very valid points. The "current system" has been in vogue for over 40 years. The current system continues to be unworkable. If you haven't thought that out for yourself yet, go back to the bush where you belong. Go back to flying eight or ten hours a day. Go back to living in a fire camp where you never get away from the duties of the job. Go back to the drill camp; the seismic camp; the arctic camp. Continue to enjoy the benevolence of the much-beloved company you work for. Don't come out, because if you do, you'll find that it's 2012, and everything has passed you by - including your family. News flash, boys and girls: SCMC is NOT looking out for the best interests of the aviators who spend long days and short nights in some of the most harsh, demanding and intensive flight environments on the face of the earth. I anticipate much trolling by company-sponsored hacks for making that statement. Perhaps a lawyer will issue a takedown notice, demand my ip addy and follow it up with a stern letter of admonition or threats of intimidation. I can only hope. How someone can not be disgusted by SCMC's desire to continue unabated in their greed to satisfy a bottom line that never hits bottom fails to amaze. A management style that constantly and consistently underbids just to put machines "to work for cash flow" has become common. How has "we'll finance it for now, there'll be plenty of work for it next year" been working out for some of you so far? Perhaps company owners should be taking basic accounting courses, rather than pursuing recommendations for the continued status quo of flight and duty times as they affect their aviators. I can only look forward to a future where the whining and sniveling by aviators will continue unabated once some collection of miscellaneous companies seeks and gets approval for all mandated days off to be spent in camp. That way, you boys and girls will be able to go right to work on that next job and make tons of money without spending any time at home with your families. If you do make such a request for time at home, it will be unpaid. You'll have to pay your own way to get there, too. Go figure. Already I can see management throwing up its arms and telling their aviators "it's the new regs, we can't do anything about it." Because you know what? That's the way management will cavalierly dismiss it. “It’s in the manual now” works great, doesn’t it? You had your days off under the "new" old regs. You spent them in camp because the company was too cheap to send you out and put you back. You refused to have any input to new regulation, so how could you possibly complain about it? That there was no single entity representing helicopter aviators as part of any group and there was no helicopter aviator input into the draft report is entirely absurd. The statement "well, that's not true, we had 'some' pilot input" is meaningless. Really? You had pilot input? Who were they, who did they work for, and who sponsored them? Some of the owners had staff pilots that they consulted? How unbiased was that input? It's high time the helicopter industry - pilots included - dragged itself out of the '70s and '80s, and, kicking and screaming, moved into the '90s, at the very least. I know, I expect too much, but the ‘90s are only thirteen years in the past - so far. Excuse my rambling, but it continues to boggle my mind that in 2012, helicopter aviators continue to be unrepresented - AND PROUD OF IT - at a table where companies make the claim that they are the only ones capable of representing the best interest of their aviators. If the audacity of that statement doesn't cause the majority of you to smirk and/or break out into uncontrollable laughter, nothing will. I cheerfully await the meaningless "it's none of your business, HAC is diligently working on it" statement from some company shill. Perhaps he could recommend that I be blackballed.
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