Feeds

Stray SMS leads to aborted landing

This is your Captain texting

High performance access to file storage

On May 27th, 2010, as an A310 flying from Darwin to Singapore descended to just 500 feet above terra firma, crew noticed the craft was not ready to land.

In accordance with the procedures of the airline concerned, Australian budget flier Jetstar, the crew executed a “go-around”, the hasty cancellation of landing and consequent rapid ascent to greater safety.

The reason for the incident?

Jetstar is politely calling it a “ cockpit distraction”, but the remedy it will apply to make sure this doesn’t happen again tells us more, as it reveals it has:

“Added an item to the takeoff checklist providing a reminder to pilots to ensure their mobile phones are switched off. This is a result of the investigation finding one of the pilot’s phones was inadvertently left on and automatically picked up messages on approach to Changi Airport, adding to distraction in the cockpit.”

If you’re thinking that what happened is that the pilot’s phone bleeped and he checked his messages rather than checking his readiness to land, you’d be about right.

Jetstar’s Chief Pilot, Captain Mark Rindfleish, said in a statement that: “Human factors, like distraction, are why airlines have so many procedural safeguards built into how they fly. The combination of factors on JQ57 has provided new learnings and the opportunity to add to these safeguards, which we take very seriously.”

The airline has therefore changed policies to ensure that aircraft are ready to land when 1000 feet above the earth. It has also “reinforced the importance of crew ensuring they use mandatory rest periods in between duties effectively.”

BOOTNOTE: Your correspondent lives beneath Sydney Airport’s main flight path and, in conversation with a pilot relative on a stormy evening this week, mentioned that it was the kind of weather in which go-arounds are not uncommon. The pilot remarked that go-arounds are no big deal these days, are achievable with a press of a single button in many modern aircraft and don’t result in an ascent much sharper than that experienced during takeoff.

But there’s another button for graver circumstances that really does give a plane all it’s got, to get out really nasty scrapes. ®

SANS - Survey on application security programs

More from The Register

next story
A black box for your SUITCASE: Now your lost luggage can phone home – quite literally
Breakfast in London, lunch in NYC, and your clothes in Peru
Broadband Secretary of SHEEP sensationally quits Cabinet
Maria Miller finally resigns over expenses row
AT&T threatens to pull out of FCC wireless auctions over purchase limits
Company wants ability to buy more spectrum space in auction
EE dismisses DATA-BURNING glitch with Orange Mail app
Bug quietly slurps PAYG credit - yet EE denies it exists
Like Google, Comcast might roll its own mobile voice network
Says anything's possible if regulators approve merger with Time Warner
Turnbull leaves Australia's broadband blackspots in the dark
New Statement of Expectations to NBN Co offers get-out clauses for blackspot builds
Facebook claims 100 MEEELLION active users in India
Who needs China when you've got the next billion in your sights?
Facebook splats in-app chat, whacks brats into crack yakety-yak app
Jibber-jabbering addicts turfed out just as Zuck warned
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a defence for mobile apps
In this whitepaper learn the various considerations for defending mobile applications; from the mobile application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies needed to properly assess mobile applications risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.