50

That could end up being a really bad idea if you've accelerated past your V1 speed -- your abort would then put you off the end of the runway, and the consequences from that range from bad to catastrophic. A much better idea would be to look at the markers on your airspeed indicator, and if you're at/above rotation speed, go ahead and rotate. Then sort out ...


39

First I have to admit that I have no idea what FAA regulations said about passengers taking part in controlling an airplane in 1989, but I guess it was at least frowned upon, even if the passenger happened to be a pilot. The United Airlines flight 232 made a stunningly successful "landing" at Sioux City airport, much due to the fact that they took an extra ...


32

The rules say to do whatever necessary to ensure safety of flight. 91.3 Responsibility and authority of the pilot in command. (a) The pilot in command of an aircraft is directly responsible for, and is the final authority as to, the operation of that aircraft. (b) In an in-flight emergency requiring immediate action, the pilot in command may deviate ...


27

The operating procedures for the four airlines I worked for (2 commuters and two 747 carriers) all called for the flying pilot (which would be the first officer if it was their leg) to retain control of the airplane until all relevant checklists had been accomplished. That said, it is, of course, the captain's prerogative to take control at any point. That ...


27

As pointed out above pilots may deviate from any regulation in the event of an emergency per §91.3(b). One of the more common events is a civilian aircraft making an emergency diversion and landing at a nearby military airbase, such as this 777 flight which diverted to Erickson AB, Shemaya, AK. The OP brings up the case of Cactus 1549. But what Sully and ...


25

The regulatory bodies are reluctant in defining a regulation for that. Because there are first officers who do not hold an Airline Transport Pilot License. The airlines would need to add an extra flight member for that rare situation. Instead, it's up to each airline's SOP when it comes to Crew Resource Management. There are various assertiveness training ...


24

In 2017 an MD-83 aborted takeoff above V1. The pilot was widely criticized for that, which was against a lot of rules and conventional wisdom. The NTSB report determined that aborting above V1 was the most correct thing to do in this case. https://www.planeandpilotmag.com/article/ntsb-report-how-this-pilot-saved-116-lives/#.XkzGlopOmhA


23

At the commercial airline level, there is very little difference between a captain and a first officer, other than the amount of time that they have been at the company (seniority). Typically, each of the two pilots takes turns flying the airplane. For instance, if today's trip is from Miami to Charlotte to Chicago to Atlanta to Miami, the captain may fly ...


18

What you're quoting is the verbal portion of an important principle called Positive Exchange of Controls. This is a process of ensuring that someone (and only one) is always in control of the aircraft, and that there is no doubt about which pilot that is. The best practice, taught to student pilots, is a three-stage handoff procedure: Pilot A: You have ...


17

As has been said in previous answers, the duties are divided between the PF and PNF, and the Captain and First Officer typically change which they will do each leg. However, company policy may specify changes to this procedure. For example, the first 747 carrier I worked for specified that approaches and landings to runway 13 at Kai Tek, the old Hong Kong ...


16

The whole idea behind the policies and procedures for transferring control of the aircraft between the pilots is so that everybody is always on the same page. Somebody always needs to be flying the aircraft. If I want to hand control over to the other pilot, and he doesn't want it/can't take it, he would simply explain why not. I have never seen standard ...


15

In airline operations, both pilots are trained to handle engine failures at any point during the flight, including during the takeoff. As far as who actually flies when it happens, it is a matter of the airlines SOP's and could be different from airline to airline. In general it is safer for whoever is flying when the engine fails to continue rather than ...


15

Pretty much every FO struggles with this. Technically yes, in the extreme case. If the actions of the capt are about to get everybody killed or otherwise endanger the aircraft, the FO is supposed to have the authority and an obligation, after a suitable verbal interchange, to intervene by saying "I have control" and take over. Generally there needs to be ...


12

Yes, the FO is allowed to take over control from the captain on his own initiative, if the circumstances justify it. One case that I know off where it saved the day was this incident of Lufthansa. On rotation for take-off the aircraft started to roll. Corrections by the captian only aggravated the situation until very quickly the aircraft's wingtip was ...


11

There was a case in 2012, where the captain started acting erratically on the flight deck. The first officer tricked him out of the cockpit and shut the door behind him. Passengers restrained the captain until an emergency landing could be made. In a more recent similar case, a captain was removed before the flight had ...


10

This is common in many international airlines. Lufthansa Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) dictates that all flight procedural communication (checklists, standard callouts, etc.) are done in English. The only "German" I've seen on Lufthansa's checklists is "handy .... off" in the pre-startup checklist (German English for "mobile phone .... off").


9

Firstly, "co-pilot" is not a term that is really used anymore. When people say that they usually mean the First Officer. It's a bugbear of mine because "co-pilot" implies that there is one real pilot and a half pilot, when the reality is an airliner needs at least two fully qualified pilots to fly it safely! When it comes to actually flying the plane, the ...


9

CRM is about making use of all available resources to safely conduct a flight. Pilots these days (even single pilot ops) have a wealth of resources available to them. Anything you can see and anyone you can talk to is a resource, and CRM is about making efficient use of those resources. Flying a light single you will have a subset of these resources: ...


8

CRM is not just crew anymore - it's now typically referred to as "Cockpit Resource Management" (or in some cases, when no crew is present, as "Single-Pilot Resource Management") and it's something the FAA emphasizes on all checkrides. CRM includes all resources available to any pilot. In a typical light GA aircraft this means checklists, ...


8

In the end it's all up to the Captain. If the FO is PF, which with most airlines alternates with each leg of a block, and something exciting happens, the capt may let the FO continue flying if the capt feels the FO has things under control. Or the capt may say "I have control" and take over. Depends. The Pilot In Command is pilot in command. He/she ...


8

It is very, very complicated. It is so complicated that an entire department is dedicated to this task. Below I would provide a glimpse of crew rostering. Basics Most airlines provide roster on a monthly basis. The flights that will be flown are well planned beforehand. From this, a minimum number of crew must be on each flight, for example a Captain, a ...


8

There have been cases with incorrectly wired controls, with the aircraft doing the opposite action than such a wrongly wired control commands. Then the narrow rules about how to use the control to achieve intended action must be completely reversed, moving the stick in the opposite direction. Doing so does not break the wider rules that cover such ...


7

Typically, both pilots will set up "their" stuff as prescribed in the airline SOP's, and then the checklist will be called for. At my airline, the captain has certain switches that he sets and certain systems that he checks -- generally things on his side of the overhead panel along with his flight instruments -- and the FO does likewise. The FO performs ...


7

As with everything it varies from airline to airline, but for the most part it is option 2). Larger carriers will usually give pilots the option of blacklisting another if they wish, but smaller airlines with only a few dozen pilot combinations might just tell the pilot to suck it up. The airline will also avoid placing a brand new FO with a brand new ...


7

Your question's title says "commercial aviation", and in the question you indicate you're interested in the history. With that in mind, I'll add to Ben's excellent answer. Commercial aviation includes not just airline but also non-airline flying, including corporate flying. In corporate flying, the duties of the co-pilot varied greatly depending on what the ...


7

This question has been asked and answered in a slightly different form at How able were pilots of three-person cockpits at running the normal FE work?, and I refer you to that for basic info. Concerning the detail in your question: What difficulties would the pilots face for the remainder of the flight, including navigation and landing, with no one ...


6

The responsibility of checking the FMA after a mode-change is not the PM's alone. If the PF calls for VNAV, the PM will select VNAV, now both of them need to check VNAV is active. Regarding aural alerts, there are already alerts to when the flight deviates from the norm, for example an altitude warning (which doubles as approaching target altitude), stick ...


6

I will note that in maritime law there is the General Prudential Rule which states that avoiding a collision takes precedence over strict adherence to other rules and regulations. I would have to believe that there are similar provisions in aviation rules.


5

During the flight, there is a pilot flying (PF) who is in control of the plane, and a pilot not flying (PNF), who is monitoring communications, systems, navigation, and other things. In order to avoid confusion, or a situation where both pilots are trying to make different control inputs for the plane, it should be clear who is in control. If the PNF wants ...


5

Both pilots will log time for the flight, although their log entries will be slightly different. The captain will log hours as Pilot-in-Command (PIC). In practice, "George" (the autopilot) will probably actually fly the plane.


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