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Fred Lewis

Changes In Flight Duty Time Regulations

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I've never heard or read a more unmitigated piece of crap or worse demonstration of a total lack of awareness of the realities of Canadian commercial helicopter operations as they are currently economically regulated.

 

Your bandaid recipes of charging more for services and employing low-time pilots completely fail to address how they can be achieved when the marketplace, driven mainly by oil & gas, responds naturally to the proliferation of operators prepared to grab market share with low to zero margin rates and to an all too swiftly reducing pool of adequately experienced pilots.

 

The industry's pendulum of boom-bust can only continue swinging wildly through 180 degrees as long as it is inadequately regulated, and not subject to meaningful (read 'rigid') standards of economic and risk management audit.

 

If the 'boys' that play fast and loose with the CTA, CARs and CASS are ever brought into line we'll see substantive change, but no dreamscape of high rates and 100-hour pilots will ever achieve it.

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Terry!

 

Don't hold back! Tell us what you really think!!!

 

So if we hire low time guys and charge more, ALL of the problems disappear?

 

If only guys like this would start their own company and put it into practice, a lot of these valuable low times guys would have it made...

 

 

Keith W

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Mr. Lewis has once again demonstrated a complete lack of understanding of the Canadian VFR helicopter market. Of course we make lots of take-offs and landings you fool! Thats what we do! The rebuttal to HAC's dissent reads like the script to a cheap, gutter-level, tabloid news program. I can even hear the dramatic soundtrack in the background as the whiskey-voiced narrator describes how difficult and dangerous our job is.....

 

Kevin McCormick

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Canadian Helicopter Pilot's Association? Who are the clowns who set this up? Obviously not a pilot. And how is this association working for the pilot's best interest? The most ridiculous read I have had in a while. If it was up to the CHPA I would do three "sectors" a day and go home. Then the next 7 pilots behind me could get the drill moved. Or the next 75 pilots could get the seismic grid layed out. Crazy.

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Canadian Helicopter Pilot's Association? Who are the clowns who set this up? Obviously not a pilot. And how is this association working for the pilot's best interest? The most ridiculous read I have had in a while. If it was up to the CHPA I would do three "sectors" a day and go home. Then the next 7 pilots behind me could get the drill moved. Or the next 75 pilots could get the seismic grid layed out. Crazy.

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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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Yeah, I don't know. I ain't no pilot, but to suggest that helicopter opertions (and their flight 'sectors') should be similarly regulated as airline pilots doesn't seem right. I'll bet those airline guys (especially the trans-oceanic flights) probably go through like a half hour checklist just to set up the computers and stuff for a landing, and I'm sure their pre-flight checklist is twice as long. And that's supposed to be comparable to a helicopter pilot doing 30 10-minute cycles in a day? It's a tough gig and requires it's own unique regulations and solutions not a cookie-cutter approach, because apples and coconuts can't be compared.

 

I know most companies are above board out there, but I'd say it would be a good first step just to get everybody on board and regulated to the EXISTING duty regulations! I've seen a bit too much fudging of numbers and stretching of definitions over the years. Again, I know most out there are good and (from what I see/hear) things are better than they used to be, but I'm sure the fudging and stretching still goes on in places.

 

So, we should crew a single A-Star in the bush with 2 pilots and two engineers now (max 12 hour duty days)? Double crewing to fly round the clock is one thing. But double crewing to get through a busy but fairly basic bush job should now be required? And actually, if you REALLY look at the science, engineers shouldn't work at night so now maintenance will have to get done during the day. That means the aircraft won't be flying, so to keep flying you now will need a second aircraft to spell off the first one when it's down during the day for maintenance. So, 2 A-Stars, 2 pilots, and 2 engineers for a single machine bush job now...methinks that would require a little more than a mere 10-20% increase in tariffs.

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Canadian Helicopter Pilot's Association?

 

The Canadian Helicopter Pilots Association is a website - nothing more. It does not represent me. It will never represent me. Whoever has this website is portraying themselves as a representative of Canadian Helicopter Pilots.

 

THIS IS FALSE!!!!!

 

I want to know more about who is behind this. They DO NOT REPRESENT ME!!! I don't like this.

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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.

 

The Canadian Helicopter Pilots Association is a website - nothing more. It does not represent me. It will never represent me. Whoever has this website is portraying themselves as a representative of Canadian Helicopter Pilots.

 

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?

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