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Jun 23rd 2010 4:59PM Before the door closes, the Captain looks at all the NOTAMs and his divert airfield. If he doesn't like the divert airfield--for whatever reason--HE has the authority to change the divert airfield on the paperwork AND request more fuel to that different airfield given on the paperwork. Captains have experience by that time (hopefully) to make these informed decisions. Asked 'Why' they are changing divert airfields and fuel load, experienced Captains have the answer.
'Captains Authority' rules. Management may question the decision and call the Captain to the dreaded 'Red Carpet' after the flight (to avoid a delay) all they want. It's a free trip for the Captain on the Companies dime to headquarters. But, if there's a viable, good reason for the Captains decision, the Captain wins the day--every time! Captains Authority!!
After a few of these 'Red Carpet' appearances though, management can only blame themselves for this erosion of Captains decisions. Captains are only human too, and nobody wants to be constantly explaining him/herself. We're talking GOOD decisions here. There are always those out there that will run off in left field and THOSE individuals should be constantly scrutinized and questioned, and if re-training doesn't HELP these individuals re-think their decision-making skills, maybe they should seek another career field altogether or flying that doesn't require interaction with people.
It's like a cop with a badge and a gun. Yes, he has the authority and power to demand action. He can also defuse the situation to a peaceful outcome. To Protect and Keep The Peace. Keep the Peace! Until the situation demands he take martial law into effect. There are good pilots and good cops out there. It's all in training to handle a crowd and defuse the situation. Training.
Jun 23rd 2010 2:57PM The crew is ultimately responsible. The Stewardess communicates to the captain the condition of the passengers. The Captain, and only the Captain, makes the the final decision to divert, fly straight, or upside down. The captain IS God when the door shuts. Captain retraining or firing is the answer here. Just flying the plane isn't your only duty. You wear many hats when you advance to Captain. And that's why you're paid the big bucks. Fill the shoes or let someone who can do the job properly fill them.
Dec 7th 2009 3:22PM Thought GS would really be customer service. Falls short. Way short. Plane had to change a pump. Captain says mechanic will let him know whats wrong, then says it will be at least an hour to change, plus time to test it. 40 minutes have gone by already, I'm going to miss my connection. So I get off the plane and fly an entirely different airline. NOBODY approached me on the United flight. You get a nice greeting, thats about it with GS. Emirates is the best with Limo service! Wow!