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... ake advice. Each member of the 'team' is interdependent on oneanother. Sometimes in aviation the Captain is thought of as 'god', you don'tdare approach him or question him. A lot of cabin and flight crews are afraid toapproach the Captain about a safety concern for fear of how he'll react. Slowlythis attitude has been changing.
How can a cockpit be effectively run if theCaptain's own crew can not work together? One example of how these attitudes can affect the way hazardoussituations are handled is the Air Ontario flight from Dryden, Canada. Theairliner had been waiting along time for it's turn to takeoff. The weather wasbad, it was snowing hard and the visibility was low. The last time the plane wasde-iced was a half-hour ago. From the pilots view out the window everythinglooked normal. Meanwhile, a flight attendant noticed the snow that wasaccumulating on the aircraft's wings. She wanted to inform the flight crewbefore takeoff but was intimidated by what their response would be to her, soshe said nothing.
There was also an airline pilot aboard who wasn't on duty atthe time, but was also concerned about ice forming on the wings. He thoughtabout letting the flight crew know what he saw, but didn't want to interferewith their operations. The Air Canada barely took off when it crashed becauseice had built on the wings causing loss of lift (Chute & Wiener, 1996).Cabin Crew is part of the Team Here again is the human error chain. If one of the links could have beenbroken the accident wouldn't have happened. These attitudes can and do causeharm. The flight attendant and off duty pilot should have informed the crew ofthe possible danger and the Captain should have requested another de-icingbefore takeoff. The crew should welcome the cabin crew on their concerns, afterall they too are a part of the team.Trusting the Crew's Judgment Trusting each other's judgement is a necessity.
Without it, how can thecrew work together? The Captain must be able to trust that his/her crew areperforming their duties properly and vise/versa. Besides having authority theCaptain is also the leader. He/she is the one when emergency situations arisepulls the crew together to work as a team even when they don't know each other.A true leader is willing to listen to others, be respectful and be able to takecommand.Crew Resource Management (CRM) A program called Crew Resource Management (CRM) has been developed tohelp implement these leadership, communication and decision making skills increw members. Since the main cause of accidents is due to human error it ishoped that through CRM training crew membfers will communicate and work togethermore effectively. CRM is not required by the FAA, but it is recommended. Manyairlines are having their crews go through this training and they look highly onpilots who not only posse the technical skills but also the people skills.Outline of CRM Training In years past emphasis was put on the technical, stick and rudderaspects of flying. In recent years it has become evident that these skills bythemselves are not enough, but that training in people skills is needed. That iswhat CRM is about.
It provides crews' training in: 1. Communication. 2. Decision making. 3. Assertiveness.
4. Leadership/Followership. 5. Teamwork. 6. Task Delegation. 7.
Managing. Crew members going through CRM training will attend classroominstruction, watch video's and participate in role playing on these subjects(FAA- AC, 1995). LOFT Training Because crews rarely work together more than once and dont't have timeto build a commrodery, using the Line Oriented Flight Training (LOFT) simulatorcrews practice managing a cockpit with members they've never met (Chute & WienerI,1996). This simulator is like virtual reality. Pilots sit in a cockpit wherethe windows are where the video screen is, all the buttons and knobs work.(Pilot have come out of these LOFT simulators sweating, because what they'vejust experienced seemed so real). In LOFT crews can fly routes and haveemergency situations come up, like an engine failure, deteriorating weather, andnavigation problems.
The benifit about LOFT is that it's a simulator, there's nodanger involved and yet the crew still learns (Helmreich, 1996). Crews goingthrough LOFT training are evaluated on how well they handled the differentsituations, communication with each other and task delegation. These trainingsessions are vidio taped so the crew can debrief afterwards how well they didand what they need to change.Organize Resources and Priorities Crew members are not only leaders but also managers. They must be ableto use their time and resources wisely. Thers's only so many tasks that oneperson can handle and be efficient at the same time. That's why Captains need toknow when to delegate duties and when to notice that another has to many. Also,They need to prioritise, know what duties are the most important and when theyneed to be done. This is all part of being a leader and manager.CONCLUSIONSummary of Findings Human error is the main cause of aircraft accidents, and it's a chain oferrors that sets the accident into motion.
Poor flight and cabin crewcommunication does exist. A program called Crew Resource Management has beendeveloped to improve teamwork, proper task delegation, communication, and trustamong the crew.Interpretation of the Findings The need for crew communication is evident. When crews' don't worktogether their performance level is low and this is when they are volnerable toaccidents. Programs like CRM are very helpful in instilling these principles andbreaking the bad habits. Poor attitiudes and habits can't be changed overnight.That's why there is a need for recurrent CRM training. Communicaiton andteamwork is the key to safe and effective operations. There's no 'I' in CREW butthere is 'WE'.REFERENCESChute, R.
D. & Wiener, E. L. 'Cockpit/cabin communication: I. A tale of twocultures.' [http://olias.arc.nasa.gov/personnel/people/Rebecc aChute/JA1.htm.].Oct 1996.Federal Aviation Administration. (1995) Crew resource management training (AFS-210, AC no.
120-51B). Washington, D. C.Nader, R. & Smith, W. J. (1994). Collision course: The truth about airlinesafety.
PA: TAB Books.FAA News. 'Atlantic coast airlines first to use FAA crew performance program.'[http://www.dot.gov/affairs/apa15596.htm] . Sept 1996.Helmreich, R. L. 'The evolution of crew resource management.'[http://www.psy.utexas.edu/psy/helmrei ch/iata96/htm]. Oct 1996.Chute, R.
D. & Wiener, E. L. (1996). Cockpit-cabin communicaiton: II. shall wetell the pilot? The International Journal of Aviaiton Phychology, 6 (3), 211--229.
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