Sunday, December 19, 2010

Secrets Your Pilot Will Never Tell You

The November, 2010, (OK, I'm behind) Readers Digest has an article about "50 Secrets Your Pilot Will Never Tell You." A few of these are worth passing along...

Pilots will never say,

  • "We're heading into a thunderstorm." If you hear we are getting ready to fly into a "thunderstorm" and that you should fasten your seat belt you are probably sitting next to me (and I am listening to United's Channel 9 plus I have checked the radar just before they closed the aircraft door). You'll never hear "thunderstorm" from a pilot nor will you hear about "severe turbulence." You'll know you are heading into the latter when the pilot says, in the middle of the drink service, "flight attendants immediately take your seats."
  • "Ladies and gentlemen, we just had an engine failure." This is so true. I was on a flight from Dulles to O'Hare and, as they fired up the engines, the right one exploded. Burst of flame (yes, flame), parts on the ground, billowing smoke for quite a while. The flight crew told us we were headed back to the gate but never even said we had an engine problem. 
Most annoying comment:
  • A pilot poo-pooing passengers who push back when told there is a 'weather' delay. Yes, it is true that conditions can be favorable at the origin and destination but bad in between. However, as a meteorologist how has had major airlines as clients and who has taught aviation meteorology, I can tell you that weather is the airlines' all-purpose excuse. They like using weather because they think it is the pre-internet days when passengers could not check and because when the delay is due to weather they do not have to take care of passengers who suffer major delays. My advice to the airlines: Tell your customers the truth! We can handle it.
The rest are at the link.  And passengers, don't be "gate lice"!

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