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  1. Hey Everyone. I have waited for a while in order to get a view of all the opinions on this. And so I want to add my own thoughts as a division director of a division that has one FIR that has a language requirement that is enforced. Specifically our Montreal FIR. As you all may know, Canada IRL has two official national languages. English and French. In Quebec French is the dominant language, so much so in order to preserve the Quebec culture there is varying laws dictating how and when English may be used. Now, back to VATSIM. I have a Division where there is 6 FIRs which are predominantly English speaking and 1 FIR where there is a requirement for the controller to speak French to a level of being able to control. The FIR can provide training in English and some if not all of the documentation is both in French and English. In other words, the FIR has gone to every length to accomodate the visiting controller short of one thing. They must be able to control in French as there is a large number of pilots that ONLY want to converse in french. Then fly within the Montreal Airspace and not outside it. And IRL this is also applicable. I have and will continue to support Montreals language requirement. While CoR dictates that all controllers must be capable of controlling in English (again which aligns with RW), I see no reason why we need to inflict those same rules on Pilots. I would rather pilots focus their time on being able to fly and follow instructions properly than learning a new language! At the end of the day there is a WEALTH of places where a controller looking for a new challenge can go control, in a language they are comfortable with. There is no reason to inflict uncomfortable situations on pilots just to satisfy either a visiting controller or a "quantity first" style argument. When there really, to my view thus far, is no empiracle data that supports that this actually is a real issue. One thing that always sticks in my head about the Montreal FIR was a while back, they were in need of help from the training perspective. My Divisional Training Director took the time to learn French sufficiently to be able to adequately control in the language and thus, then be able to train controllers in that FIR. To me THAT was the right and most supportive thing to do. And kudos to him for doing so, for myself, I am lucky that all the staff in Montreal speak English so well and are willing to hold their meetings in English when I decide to turn up 😉 I'll admit, in the initial reviews of GCAP this one slipped past me as I was overly focused on other areas. However with the benefit of reading so many impassioned responses about this. I have to agree this is something that is important to many areas and I am unsure there is real tangiable benefit in dictating a path in a high level policy. Beyond, of course, it's up to the local division with RVP oversight. I think David has put this nicely. This is not something that should be dictated by GCAP. This should be left at the discretion of the RVP's. I think they are smart enough and know their respective area's well enough to make informed decisions with their divisions on what is best for each area. Phil
    12 points
  2. This is an example of parts of the BoG being completely out of touch with the sub-divisions. It is not reasonable to say to me, as a sub-division leader that when a visitor wants to branch out beyond the confines of their home facility that I need to tell my instructors to prioritize them over an OBS who hasn't even touched the scope. VATSIM is and always has been a hobby of specialization, from what I can tell the goal of this community is to have an accurate simulation of ATC around the world. When VATSIM comes to it's membership and says "We want to break down borders and let it all go" it's makes us think that VATSIM wants to be more like IVAO where there is significantly less oversight of controller training and standards. I am not gonna sit here and say there needs to be no restriction because some accountability is useful, but 14 days? From a network wide policy, this reaches too far. I personally thought 90 days was fine as a division wide policy, that prevents people from sitting too long and waiting and also gives the divisions the latitude to shorten that time for their sub-divisions. It makes no sense to me that a visitor from another region can come to my facility and demand a comp check within 14 days of joining, when I have OBS-S3s who have been waiting months to steal a precious second with my instructors because they are so off the wall busy. Yes I am going to stick by Comp checks need to happen, but this huge oversight from the BOG is absurd to me and needs to reevaluated. Even from not my perspective, if say I a VATUSA controller, visited VATUK and then demanded they evaluate me to the minimum standard within 14 days, are the 40 OBSes that have been waiting a year for a intro session going to be happy? Of course not. I'd be livid, and I'm sure they would be too. My official proposal is restore it back to 90 days and put language to allow divisions latitude to shorten. This document is trying to do the job of too many division staff members at once. Let your divisions make policies that are most beneficial to them. The bestest regards, Shane
    9 points
  3. This decision is incredibly silly and further goes to show how Anglocentric this community can be. Any discussion had with divisions such as VATJPN, VATKOR, VATPRC etc?
    6 points
  4. Pilot error is a common occurrence in the real world. What is important is not perfection, the absence of error: what is important is the ability to detect and recover from error without developing an undesired aircraft state. It sounds like you are already good at detecting error. Well done! Your path to improvement is identifying threats sooner, before those threats cause the errors in the first place. You could also possibly work a little on remaining calm, as you identified- trust the process. They say experience is what you get just after you'd needed it, so keep practising! Making those mistakes might suck, but its a part of the learning process. Welcome to VATSIM!
    6 points
  5. Cross The Pond: Eastbound 2021 I am excited to open our discussion thread relating to CTP Eastbound 2021. For those not familar, Cross the Pond (almost exclusively referred to as 'CTP' throughout VATSIM) is the longest running and largest event on the VATSIM network. We run 2 events every year, flying 'Eastbound' from North and Central America to Europe at the start of the year and 'Westbound' in the other direction towards the start of the year. We are proud to connect some of the most popular airports on VATSIM over an event easily lasting 10-12 hours. If you interact want to interact on social media, look for #vatsimctp The Process The planning for CTP takes the concentration of our core planning team and many facilities around 2 months to organise. In general we announce things in this order: Date - we announce the date, this year the 30th October Airfield Applications - we allow local staff to submit their airport for consideration for the event Voting - we allow the entire VATSIM membership to tell us where they want to fly Airport announcement - we announce what airports we will be using this event <-- this is the next stage of our event Pilot slot choices - pilots are able to submit their choices for where they would like to fly Lottery - a lottery process occurs whereby event slots are allocated out to the pilots who chose slots Open slots - remaining slots are opened for pilots to select Route allocation - our teams agree and allocate you a route, flight level to cross the ocean and departure time. This usually happens within 24 hours of the event Event day Rest - the team are often very sleep deprived at this point, so they are allowed a brief period where they can have 5 hours sleep... maybe more 😛 Each year we make some small changes to the process and we like to hear what you do and don't like to help us mould this event. This Event We're in the middle of the process as we write this and we'll update you as we go. This year is Eastbound, so North America across the North Atlantic landing in Europe. Interested parties have submitted their airfields for inclusion. When we choose where we will fly, we will add this information below Keeping up to Date You can keep up to date with us in various ways. This post will remain open up until and including the event. You can post questions and our members will be able to reply. We are incredibly fortunate that the experienced members of the VATSIM community are often able to answer most of your questions relating to the event. We'd therefore to invite you to join our discord. The Marketing & Communications team have created exclusive Cross The Pond Discord channels, where you can communicate with other event participants and receive critical information directly from the planning team. If you haven’t already, join the VATSIM Community discord. Once you're in the discord, you can sign up to the Cross the Pond channels. See the #role-selection channel for this. While announcements are posted on the VATSIM social media, we maintain our own twitter feed where you can hear our announcements first. #vatsimctp If you use our forum, the VATSIM team will continue an announcement thread for you to keep up to date with news and are welcome to subscribe to: Our Ideals We are fortunate to be run by a team of very experienced VATSIM members. Our core Planning Team commits a significant portion of our free time to this event every year. It's not uncommon for a significant proportion of us to sleep no more than 3-4 hours on the night before the event to get everything done and then get up to control until we collapse. We do this because we are committed to a successful event and the enjoyment of hundreds to thousands of members. If you're one of those members, then we can't wait to welcome you to our event this year. If however you don't enjoy, or think we can do better in this event, we are also happy to hear it. You can post here. You can submit feedback after the event. We know we don't make everyone happy, but we love to try to improve year on year. From the Planning Team Our thanks to all the VATSIM teams that make this happen. To name a few, our technical teams (web, tech, network); our Marketing Teams; the dozens of local staff involved every step across the pond. From our Planning team: myself, Kieran, Ryan, Phil, Matt, Nick, JF, Erik, Samy & Gunnar; we hope you enjoy CTP Eastbound 2021. See you in the skies, October 30th! (Bring your own pumpkin)
    4 points
  6. Honestly, how is that "back-seat moderating"? Please, do explain it to me. Is there a problem with what she said? You pointing out the obvious that it is someone's opinion is not required as we are in a discussion and everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Lastly, you pointing to a news article to apply as a Network Supervisor makes ZERO contribution to this thread and its primary discussion. A1 - Members shall, at all times, be courteous and respectful to one another.
    4 points
  7. Care to back that up with an argument? Again, like I said a maximum of 8 to 10 hours in 3 months. So if your division feels they only need one hour every three months that's entirely up to you. Just because the maximum is 10 doesn't mean that all divisions must enforce a 10 hour activity requirement. Hence the word maximum. This affords other divisions more flexibility. I fail to see the issue with this.
    4 points
  8. I submit that this kind of frustration surrounding the free-for-all booking process is exactly why it was primarily switched to a time-release lottery system...
    4 points
  9. Hey Andrew I agree. I think for clarity tho, we should really ensure we point out we are talking about the scope of ENDORSEMENTS here. Not ratings 🙂. So we can most certainly, if someone fails to read up on significant changes to a major or restricted minor and then makes a mess only, drop that endorsement until they have self educated or been guided. But the same cannot apply to a rating. There is another pathway to address that. Just for clarity <VBG> Phil
    4 points
  10. You get all of this for free, completely from dozens of hours of donated time from people who work full time jobs in IT. Could you not be grateful for that? You are one of hundreds of people every year who don't manage to get a slot, and it's attitudes like this that make it worse. You are not entitled to this network any more than anyone else.
    4 points
  11. This, a simple "moodle" exam with 10 questions and a simple pass rate + plus a tickbox to confirm the controller has read the procedure change won't do it at all... You need to get the controller to put this into practice... Depending on the procedure you may not need 30 sweatbox sessions but also group seminars may be possible to do so.. That is efficient.
    4 points
  12. Let me tell you something from us real world pilots: we don't make mistakes "almost every time we fly", but we definitely "make mistakes every single time we perform a flight"! This is not a joke. We are just humans, we are not meant to fly. Mistakes happen and from the moment that you accept this fact, your nervousness and your goal of performing "that perfect flight" should change. "That perfect flight" is that flight where you recognized all the mistakes that you made and corrected them in time. This is the secret. Go for it! I have been flying for a living since 1998 and every single flight is a learning experience, it never stops.
    4 points
  13. Interesting take. I'll start by pointing out that this is my own view; I can't respond on behalf of the whole Board of Governors. I've been a member of VATSIM since 2006. In that time, the most enlightening position I held was as the lead for a division that was well renowned for churning out some of the best controllers on the network. It was also renowned for being notoriously impossible to progress in, as a controller. Some of us who hold these views, which some may find highly controversial, have witnessed first hand the dangers of going down the slippery slope of opening up the floodgates to elitisism. My base view is this: 1. There should be no activity requirements for controllers 2. Under no circumstances should a controller be permitted to be downgraded, once a rating is awarded. Huff and puff all you like at these two controversial principles. If there was nobody on VATSIM that held this view, there would be no pilots, and there would be no controllers. Fact. Similarly, if nobody held the opposing view, the network would be full of people who had no idea what they were doing, and the attractiveness and strength of the community would be lost. Our strength is by finding the middle ground that drives us forward. I would urge people to consider this fact before becoming offended because others may have a slightly different view. My view is simple: if someone has demonstrated their competency as per GRP (or GCAP), it is highly unlikely they would lose so much of their competency due to a lack of activity that they should in some way be restricted from controlling in the future. I strongly suspect that some of the root cause of these problems stem from people not being trained properly in the first place. My challenge is to fix the root cause of this problem, rather than to invent a bunch of get-out clauses later down the line: face the issues up front, and fix them! We hear enough horror stories of people waiting up to a year for basic training - if we could plow our resource into automating training at our entry-level ATC, and focussing our 1-2-1 on more intense levels (APP, CTR etc), we would have progressed a long way. Harder to do when you are worried about someone who hasn't logged in for 3 months!
    4 points
  14. To get down to brass tacks here, we are all hobbyists and dedicate the amount to controlling that we personally would like to dedicate. This discussion has shown that there are quite varied opinions on what constitutes enough to remain proficient. We all agree that major (busy) airports require more time than non-major or less busy airports. I will say my personal opinion is that a facility requiring 8 - 10 hours per quarter, or forcing recurrent sweatbox sessions every time there is a change for me to continue to have the “privilege” of working “your airspace” is absolutely ridiculous for a hobby. You would need to start paying me at that point. To be honest, I don’t know how you would retain a single hobbyist controller under such rules. To be blunt, this would be exactly such a practice from which GCAP looks to protect the individual controller. In some ways it also prevents sub-divisions and divisions from being their own worst enemy by stopping them from putting in overbearing requirements that would be harmful to them. Any number is going to be an “arbitrary” one, but the GCAP would be defining what the governing body of the network thinks is too much. This gets back to the quality vs quantity argument. Just as controller’s number one issue right now seems to be pilot quality, Pilots number one issue is lack of controllers. With training queues and times long, why are we looking for ways to cut controllers at the first opportunity? Why are we imposing such strict requirements on people who dedicate their time to providing a service on the network? This further reduces the amount of ATC available to everyone. As someone who flys on the network and wants quality ATC as well as a controller who takes pride in providing a good service, I can appreciate the work facilities do and concerns they have regarding these changes. However there absolutely comes a point where quality is absolutely overblown. When we reach that point, you’re absolutely right that I’m going to put quantity over overblown quality. We are a learning network, not a proficiency network. Mistakes are going to happen. Controllers are not going to do it right 100% of the time. Facilities are going to receive *gasp* the occasional piece of poor feedback. We need to remember that all of us are learning here, even the most seasoned professional. Even in the worst case scenario, say a controller majorly screws up and launches an airplane from a minor field directly into an airplane at the major field, that’s not the end of the world. Educate and move on. GCAP allows for people to learn and provides pathways to education if problems are observed. We absolutely can provide a realistic ATC simulation service without crazy requirements and not become IVAO or MS Zone controllers.
    3 points
  15. Folks, let's keep the conversation civil, productive and moving forward please. We're here to advance the goodness of the proposed policies, not testosterone levels.... 🙂
    3 points
  16. @Mateusz Zymlais correct. It's common in RW to "shoot the ILS" while under VFR in VMC in CAS if given ATC permission.
    3 points
  17. Keeping a pilot's license current has nothing to do with flying hours, so I'm not sure where you are getting this information from. In the preceding 90 days it is a minimum of either three take-offs and landings, a flight test, or a demonstration of competence to a flight instructor. Then on top of that you are required to annually renew your instrument rating (if you have one) with a flight test/sim check as well as undergo a 6-monthly check if you are operating turbine-engine aircraft above a certain MTOW. All this is irrelevant anyway, because we are talking about controlling, not flying, which require different skill sets. If you want to use the real world as an analog, controllers in the real world are required to maintain a minimum of 8 to 16 hours per month of controlling time to stay current, depending on the positions they operate. Yes. We have attempted to do so in the past but it has been denied for one reason or another. Now to the point, controllers cannot be expected to remain competent on a position with just 3 hours in three months. The traffic levels in some divisions and subdivisions simply do not allow it, as in some places you may only see one aircraft in that three hours. Divisions and subdivisions should be given more flexibility to decide what an appropriate number of hours is to be considered current. To keep these requirements within reasonable limits, the maximum should be set at 8 to 10 hours in 3 months for major facilities so you don't have people setting ridiculous 50 hour activity requirements.
    3 points
  18. In which case both a minimum and a maximum needs to be set. If you leave these out this will simply encourage rating mill divisions to process trainees as quickly as possible. By this rule, someone could in theory go from being an OBS to C1 in four days which I would not put past certain divisions to allow. I understand that the maximum is there to prevent divisions from setting unreasonable maximum hour requirements, however not every place has the same level of traffic as VATUSA. For example, if you had a person training on Addis Ababa, they would need a lot more hours on the network to gain the same level of exposure as someone would on New York. This maximum needs to be revised upwards to between 100 to 150 hours to accommodate divisions with different traffic levels and allow divisions and subdivisions more flexibility to set the hour requirements as they see fit. In addition, to stop rating mill divisions, I propose a minimum of 25 to 50 hours to be set.
    3 points
  19. After our recent VATMENA Divisional Meeting we strongly disagree with this. Why 36 hours? This seems like this number was pulled out randomly. This in our opinion should be increased to 72 hours depending on the rating that they are going for. S1-S2 = 24 hours minimum S3 = 48 hours minimum C1 = 72 hours minimum The higher the rating you go the more crucial you need to show you understand the theory. Having a much lower hour cooldown period allows people who don't want to put effort to "speedrun" through the exams. We currently have this set and we can clearly see who puts the effort in and who doesn't.
    3 points
  20. I'm going to bring this back up after our recent VATMENA Divisional Meeting which we discussed several parts of the GCAP. We all agreed that visiting controllers should be subjected to a competency check and if necessary provided training. The wording here allows a controller from a division/region with lower training standards to be added as a visitor simply by reading some documents. Will this be corrected/revised in future editions? In addition, would 7.03 be applicable to visitors as well? Since the Division sets the standards for the Core Comptencies.
    3 points
  21. Hi Jens, There hasn't been a breach on VATSIM's end (That I know of) but I'm sure we'd have received a lot more comments on it if such a thing had occurred. Are you using the same password for VATSIM as on another site which has been breached? That would also alert apple's system. You can look at https://haveibeenpwned.com/ to see if your email is in a leak, and also using https://haveibeenpwned.com/Passwords to see if your password has been leaked somewhere. Matt
    3 points
  22. Sounds like you did a good job in recovering the sitaution - but as Josh says, the reason that you found yourself in this situation in the first place is that you departed with significantly less than the minimum legally required amount of fuel. In EU-OPS land this consists of: Taxi fuel (including fuel for startup/APU usage if this is significant) Trip fuel (takeoff to touchdown) Contingency fuel (not less than 5% of the trip fuel or 5 minutes, whichever is greater) Alternate fuel (from your destination to your planned alternate) Final reserve fuel (30 minutes at 1500ft above the destination at the planned landing weight). Additional fuel (if required for, e.g. ETOPS) Extra fuel as required by the Commander The total of the above is the minimum you should load for any flight - everything up to and including "additional fuel" is non-negotiable. The last line, "Extra fuel required by the Commander", might be 0 if you are not expecting any delay but could be lots in the event of widespread bad weather etc! In terms of your in flight fuel management - again there are rules around this and "it seems alright" is not one of them! In summary, as Josh says, in most cases if you are touching down at your destination with any less than the final reserve fuel of 30 minutes + your alternate fuel, you are in a low fuel situation; there are some circumstances where you can elect to "commit" to your destination and burn in to your alternate fuel (for instance, if the destination has at least two independent runways available and the conditions are such that a safe landing with any plausible single failure of ground or airborne equipment could be made - e.g. a downgrade from CAT II/III to CAT I), but this should not be the norm! If at any point it is apparent that a landing with less than 30 minutes of fuel may be made then a "PAN" call should be made to ATC stating the fuel remaining in minutes. As soon as it becomes apparent that the aircraft will land with less than 30 minutes of fuel remaining then a "MAYDAY" must be declared. In any event, clearly the aim must be to avoid getting in to this situation in the first instance and an early decision to divert may pay dividends, especially where there is widespread disruption with many aircraft all trying to divert at once!
    3 points
  23. I had the following idea, which in my opinion is the fairest for everyone: it allows for visitors to also control on major airfields, but still gives the main priority to home controllers. The idea entails the following. There are two waiting lists (for the major endorsement): one for home controllers and one for visiting controllers. The idea follows the following guidelines: - Training is on a first come, first serve basis. So the people the longest on a given list, are first; - There's a ratio between home and visiting controllers. I suggest something like 1 in 5, but that can be discussed of course; - Visiting controllers will never have training earlier than a home controller joining the queue at the same date or before; - If there's a visiting controller in between two home controller's joining dates, that visiting controller gets training; - Now there's 5 home controllers before the next visiting controller can receive training. So in the above, simplified example: Home controllers A, B and C get training at a major. Another spot opens up. Now visitor F gets training, because they joined at the same time as C. Home controller D and visitor G joined at the same time. However, since there's a ratio of 1 visitor in 5 home controllers, the home controllers D and E receive training first. After three more, visitor G receives training, and so on. So priority is still within the home controllers (5 for every visitor), which will increase the amount of mentors/instructors (because, let's be honest, there's barely gonna be visitors becoming a mentor, and (sub-)divisions need them, it's a neccesity). And while priority is still within home controllers, it also gives visiting controllers a chance of controlling the major. (Sub-)divisions need mentors/instructors so there is a need for priority of home controllers, which are more likely to become a mentor. I think this would be the fairest for everyone. The ratio is obviously something that can be adjusted or discussed, but I honestly feel that 1 in 5 is a pretty good trade off.
    3 points
  24. Then what is the point of this review? Finding typos?
    3 points
  25. Flying long haul on a computer is, naturally, a whole different experience by itself. I've done my share of long and ultra long haul (17 hours was the longest, I believe) in a myriad of aircraft and continents. I would add a couple of notes. If I'm not in front of my computer, I'll disconnect. There's no reason to leave the VATSIM connection open when you're going out of the house and won't be able to respond to controllers or other traffic. Now, my biggest advantage to flying long haul is that I work from home. So, it's actually quite entertaining to wake up, get a flight going, work through the day and land the bird in a different continent at the end of the day. It actually helps me to "end the day". I might get no ATC for that specific flight, but it's still entertaining. Flight Sims can offer different experiences to different individuals and that's the best part about them. Some might be doing GA, short haul, long haul, whatever... lots going on.
    3 points
  26. Dear Members, I would like to start by thanking everyone who took a few minutes to offer congratulations on my election to the position of President of the VATSIM Network. My colleagues on the Board of Governors have put their faith in me, and I look forward to working with them, and all of our volunteers in leading this network into the future. Under the leadership of Gunnar Lindahl, VATSIM has reached levels of membership and technology that previously were thought unattainable. Among the best tributes I have read described him as the most “stable, influential, and consequential President we ever had to date”, and this is especially true considering the challenges this world threw at us during the latter part of his four year tenure. This is certainly not to take away from the Presidents who came before him - Founders Harvey Stein and Richard Jenkins, followed by David Klain, Steven Cullen, and Kyle Ramsey...I truly walk in the footsteps of giants, and we all owe a lot to the six Presidents who preceded me. To them, I offer my heartfelt thanks for all you did, and continue to do to make VATSIM what it is today. During my time as a member of this network, I have always enjoyed hearing about the various “VATSIM histories” of our members. It is interesting to find out what brought someone to this network, and what keeps them involved. Many of the members I consider friends have taken their VATSIM experience and turned it into an aviation career, while others have started streaming content thus raising the visibility of our network. Some, like me, have brought their aviation careers to the network. This is my story - records show that I joined VATSIM in August of 2001, but my involvement in flight simulation dates back to 1983 when my father opened the first personal computer store in our town. It was at that store that an employee introduced me to Microsoft Flight Simulator v1.0, and I was hooked. By 1990 at the age of 18, I had my Private Pilots Licence, and in 1997 I graduated from an aviation college with a fresh CPL and a job towing advertising banners and flying traffic patrol over the cities of Toronto and Vancouver. In 1998 I returned home and over the next 9 years I earned my ATPL while flying a Cessna 421B on predominantly air ambulance missions across the Province of Ontario - with some charter work thrown in for good measure. I have some really good stories from my work as a pilot, so just ask if you are ever interested. When I retired from piloting in 2007, VATSIM took a more important place in my life by keeping me involved in, and feeding my passion in all things aviation. This, in turn, led me to roles within VATCAN, VATNA, and then the Board of Governors. VATSIM is a simulation network, not a game - there, I said it. This really should not be a polarizing statement because that was the intent of the Founders of this network when they created it a little over 20 years ago. For many it is a passionate hobby, for others a place to learn, and for still others, a place to teach. Above all however, VATSIM should and must be a safe place for all members, regardless of background or personal history, to feel safe, protected and welcome while celebrating all that virtual aviation has to offer. For me, there is simply no compromise on this. Membership in VATSIM is a privilege, not a right, and those people fundamentally incompatible with the network are simply not welcome. There are many exciting projects currently under development for our network, and I look forward to sharing more about them in due time. As a group, your leadership team is always looking for ways to enhance the experience for our members, and we are also always open to hearing your suggestions. If you have an idea we should consider, please email me at president(at)vatsim.net and I will make sure we have a look at it. Next week I will be in San Diego for FSExpo and I invite you to please come and introduce yourself if you see me wandering around. If you catch me at the right time, you may find me sharing a couple of bags of In and Out burgers with the other VATSIM members and volunteers in attendance. (IYKYK) Also, if you see me online controlling in my two current homes of ZYZ or ZMA, or flying in my favourite study level sim, please don’t hesitate to say hi. Again, thanks to all for the honour of leading this network. Let’s continue to enjoy it together.
    3 points
  27. I am wondering if the pilot in question asked for circling on a specific instrument approach that does not allow it -- as some do not have circling minima published -- and was told in that case that canceling IFR and performing a VFR pattern entry was his only option to land on his runway of choice. Would that make sense for this scenario?
    2 points
  28. I guess it takes a certain degree of emotional maturity to understand how this works.
    2 points
  29. No offence to you in particular (I applaud you responding to so many things), but I'd almost think that all discussions regarding the GCAP are hostile to those trying to involve their genuine feedback and concerns. They are people too, not some lower class of citizen below the BOG.
    2 points
  30. Huh, since when is a circling-manoeuver a VFR-procedure?
    2 points
  31. Phil, First of all, my concern is with visitors, not transfers. Dutch VACC 'owns' one of the busiest aerodromes on the network and most of our members speak English rather well, so I guess it is safe to assume that quite a few controllers will want to visit us. The number of actual requests in the past few years validates this assumption... The root cause doesn't need a lot of analysis: there is nothing 'broken' that can be fixed. Our subdivision is simply very small, and run by a small group (staff/mentors) of very dedicated volunteers. These are real human beings however, with real lives, real jobs etc. We can argue for hours how many comp checks it will take to clog the system, but I don't think that is very productive. At some point it will inevitably happen, and of course I am not talking about 1 or 2 visitor. What about 10 on day 1? And to make myself perfectly clear: I am not trying to 'butcher' anything at all. I am just trying to argue a rule that is based on false assumptions. A system that is flawed by design. There is no 'one glove fits all'. You may have noted I have also tried to make suggestions to improve this clause. A change to 28 days seems very reasonable to me, but I am sure other subdivisions will have trouble meeting even that requirement. Who am I to judge that, without fully understanding their situation? Hence, the 'as soon as reasonable' suggestion. Why not leave the details to the (sub)division? The intention of the rule is quite clear, let the sub(divisions) work out the details to the best of their (different) abilities. Cheers, Martijn
    2 points
  32. To add to this, why should I waste time and resources on a controller who flunked a check elsewhere, who is going to contribute nothing to my division in return? This point is ridiculous and it needs to be removed.
    2 points
  33. I've said it before and I'll say it again. By asking VATSIM to allow the activity requirement to be more than 3 hours, you are asking them to impose stricter requirements than is required to maintain a real world pilots license. This is unreasonable and unnecessary for virtual air traffic control. Furthermore, if a controller does not review and make themselves familiar with local procedures before logging onto the network, they are in breach of C1 and C2 of the Code of Conduct. You should be reporting them to a supervisor or referring them to the DCRM. Lastly, if the entire controller cohort of a division is unaware of a major airspace change, then I suggest that the procedures used to implement the airspace change are at fault and must be reviewed. VATPAC implemented a major airspace change for AIRAC 2110. We provided multiple NOTAMs and announcements. We have had zero issues with compliance or understanding.
    2 points
  34. I would rather sweatbox the entirety of my vACC than see someone "read-up" on the new procedures, which literally anyone can do from the AIP or similar relevant sources and then get around 30 aircraft in their face on an event and don't know what to do. If you have enough coordination between people, all necessary practical re-training for new procedures can be done in 1-2 days regardless of vACC size, given that everyone can find 2 hours of their free time *just once* to study and practice.
    2 points
  35. SIDs and STARs don't just change and lead you from point A to B in a straight line. They could be crossing other departure or arrival flows for instance... Certain airspaces classes don't magically appear randomly for no reason, same applies to restricted, danger and prohibited areas. Restrictions on certain routes don't magically appear either... Common sense why have they been implemented by the REAL WORLD CIVIL AVIATION AUTOHORITY? We want to be as real as it gets right? Then spend the time reading up on those changes and putting them into practice.
    2 points
  36. We are concerned with the 14 day requirement as well in 8.08(c). It just isn't possible to do it in 14 days for facilities that have a training backlog. We have wait times of approximately 3-4 weeks to be assigned training from the time it is requested for our HOME controllers. Does this mean we will be expected to prioritize our mentor/instructor's time with visiting controllers vs. home controllers? Should we pull training staff away from home controllers because we need to get a visitor checkout done?
    2 points
  37. For the first time ever in CTP, to increase efficiency and reduce separation, tracks containing ‘half degree waypoints’ will be used. For those unfamiliar, this post contains all you need to fly them during Cross the Pond, to ensure both you and the controllers have a smooth and enjoyable experience! What are half degree waypoints? “Traditional” coordinates are given in full degrees of latitude and longitude. For example 45N030W (4530N), which denotes 45 degrees north, 30 degrees west, the northern coordinate depicted in grey on the diagram below. This CTP some tracks will contain coordinates of half degrees of latitude and full degrees of longitude. An example can be seen in the figure below, in red: How should half degree waypoints be filed? The route string will be given to you in the correct format, ready to be copy and pasted into your favourite flight planning tool. They will consist of 4 figures describing latitude in degrees and minutes followed by “N” (North) or “S” (South), followed by 5 figures describing longitude in degrees and minutes, followed by “E” (East) or “W” (West). Make up the correct number of figures, where necessary, by insertion of zeros: 4430N03000W. How are these coordinates introduced into the FMS? First of all, please note that not all Airbus and/or Boeing addons support the format outlined below. High fidelity addons (e.g. FSLabs, Toliss, PMDG) support them. It is important that you test before flying. Below we will explain how to input half degree coordinates into Boeing and Airbus FMS only, as they are by far the most commonly flown manufacturers. If you are flying an aircraft that is neither Boeing nor Airbus, please consult the documentation provided with your addon on how to input these coordinates. Inputting half degree coordinates into Airbus FMS: Several formats exist to input half degree coordinates into an Airbus FMS. However, we will only showcase one in this briefing. The coordinates are introduced in the: xxxx.xN/yyyyy.yW format, as outlined below: Inputting half degree coordinates into Boeing FMS: The format to be used for Boeing aircraft is slightly different: Nxxxx.xWyyyyy.y, as shown below: How to insert them in the ARINC 424 format? If neither of the formats mentioned previously work in your aircraft, then give the ARINC 424 format a try. Even if you haven’t heard of it yet, you will most likely have used it on your previous journeys across the pond. For the half degree coordinates we will be using, Nxxyy is the appropriate format to use. (e.g. N4430). The figure below shows four different ARINC 424 formats, with the bottom right being the one used to input half degree coordinates. Please note that you should never use the ARINC format for ATC communications, use the full format instead! What if I can’t use either of them? Please try your hardest to do so. Your AIRAC will most certainly include the ARINC format. If you are unfamiliar with inputting these coordinates into your FMS we suggest you try it before the CTP, to ensure there will be no hiccups on the big day. If experience issues, seek for help on the VATSIM forums or Discord on how to do it for your specific addon. If you get cleared on a route with these waypoints and you cannot fly them, advise ATC ASAP.
    2 points
  38. I think we could also have options here: Must demonstrate or complete one of the following: 1) Service of at least X years as an instructional staff member; 2) Service of at least Y years as a Division/Sub-Division staff member; 3) Completion of Z hours of controlling and a leadership/professional development course. Let the Divisions decide which of these they would want to utilize.
    2 points
  39. While this is a fantastic idea and may be very helpful for a lot of newbies (so kudos to you for designing something like this), make sure you, or anyone else using this program for that matter, don't get too dependent on it. Not only is automation prone to bugs/glitches/failures, especially in the sim world, but automation can't always handle every situation that may be thrown at you as a pilot. The skill of being able to hand-fly, navigate, and communicate can never be overephasized.
    2 points
  40. This thread was a happy throwback to what all VATSIM forums used to be like in 2008. So thanks everyone, it gave me a smile. For the record, I would be fine with removing the "staff duties" clause (although training and Supervising probably should count). I remember having a big row with Chicago ARTCC about this many years ago, who wanted to exempt their staff from what were otherwise insane activity requirements for the rest of their members.
    2 points
  41. You probably didn't mean to imply that all other vACCs have partly ignored the instruction but I want to just clarify that at least VATSIM Scandinavia does our best to comply. Training is available in English throughout our subdivision and, while some old documents are only available in the local language, all new training material is primarily in English.
    2 points
  42. They are up for a competency check anyways. If they pass that: All good. If not: They need training before they can rejoin the roster. I don't see how that will make for a worse outcome than stripping them of their rating and having them get back in line with all the other OBS folk. The current problem exists because we couldn't/didn't remove them from rosters and they just logged on without any checks.
    2 points
  43. I don't know if these are the wishes of the community at large or the wishes of a vocal minority. I can imagine that many members would not be happy about hearing that due to them having been inactive for a year or two they might now have to join the back of a one year long queue for TWR-training, since they lost their rating. In addition to that losing your rating feels much worse than just being temporarily removed from the roster. I personally like the "remove from roster, do competency check for getting back on" approach much better.
    2 points
  44. And then you also have S1 students who want to get their S2 so they can control more. This is a hobby afterall, prioritising competency checks so they don't get lost in waiting - sure, but give them more than just 2 weeks. Bear in mind, some of the people requesting competency checks need them to get re-certified from being inactive. So, they can't wait a few more weeks after being inactive for months?
    2 points
  45. The announcement posts are closed, but I for one really felt the need to comment on the amazing job Gunnar has done for VATSIM. Over the term of Gunnar's tenure, incredible things have happened to and in VATSIM and I simply cannot believe that these would have happened as smoothly as they have without Gunnar's hand at the helm. Gunnar, i wish you well. If I could speak the language of your forefathers, I would raise a skull in celebration of your contribution.
    2 points
  46. I found and fixed a bug in the way vatSys was handling a DXGI_ERROR_DEVICE_REMOVED error - that build is live now. I'm fairly confident that it's not vatSys causing that error in the first place, but now at least it should recover okay when it happens (you might notice a stutter).
    2 points
  47. Cross the Pond is happy to announce our departure and arrival fields for 2021 Eastbound! Departing: KBOS Boston Logan International Airport KORD Chicago O'Hare International Airport KATL Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta KJFK John F. Kennedy Airport KMIA Miami International Airport CYYZ Toronto Pearson KIAD Washington Dulles International Airport Arriving: EHAM Amsterdam Airport Schiphol LEBL Barcelona EDDB Berlin Brandenburg EIDW Dublin EFHK Helsinki-Vantaa Airport EGLL London Heathrow LFPG Paris Charles De Gaulle LOWW Vienna International Airport You can keep up to date with us via our twitter @vatsimctp, or the VATSIM Community Discord. The Community Discord has CTP-specific channels that you can opt-into via the #role-selection channel.
    2 points
  48. Some tips for the inevitable future mishaps: Disconnecting is always a last resort, but you have other ways of salvaging the situation. If you notice that you have programmed the wrong ILS frequency, you can also call up ATC, tell them what has happened, and that you want to go around and come in for another attempt. They may offer to keep you on the "wrong" approach and re-clear you; if you feel 100% comfortable doing that, then go for it, but if you have doubts, it's better to go around and try again. Go-arounds happen for all sorts of reasons, including pilot error, this doesn't embarrass you, rather, calling a go-around when you feel unsafe is the professional thing to do, and IRL, there is a "no blame go-around" policy. When briefing an approach, don't just brief the happy case, also brief potential threats, that is, things that can go wrong, and how you plan to handle those. In this case, you know you're coming into an airport with full parallel ops, and, like other German airports with parallel runways, landing runway and transition may be assigned independently, and on short notice. So two threats you want to brief are a late runway change, and selecting the wrong ILS. A possible mitigation of those threats is to have both ILS frequencies on your NAV radio: the one you expect on the current, and the other one on standby. You may also want to put a post-it on your screen with the runway numbers and corresponding frequencies noted on it, and brief that you will cross-check the ILS frequency against those whenever ATC tells you the runway number. You can, and should, do all this well before things get busy - the idea is to move as much workload as possible away from the "hot" phases, set yourself up to automatically do the right thing.
    2 points
  49. Filippo A couple of comments on this. Firstly, if you are a controller in a low traffic sector. Then you are there at your choice as that is where you chose to train. So surely you knew this when selecting to train there right? Secondly. To your comment of "where's the fun". Well there is also the argument of "if you staff it they will come" and while I know many question this philosophy. I have seen it bear out way too many times to ignore it across the several years I have been involved with this hobby. But to your point, I agree there needs to be a little fun in the mix. So I don't think there is anything preventing you getting a visitors endorsement to somewhere a little busier yet still, spending a good chunk of time in that less busy airspace helping to build traffic by staffing it regularily. The issue here is that there is many places in the world that are "dull" and "boring". I remember days when the UK was dull and boring because I controlled there in those days. Until we staffed it regularily and very quickly it became far less dull and boring. However, it requires some dedication and faith in the fact that time investment = results. Nothing in this hobby is an "instant gratification" proposition and those who think it is, seem to have the least fun. So my suggestion to someone not having any fun because of a lack of traffic is this. Go visit somewhere a little busier, get a little fun, but KEEP staffing that slow airspace, because when folks see people on there regularily....they will start to fly there. Phil
    2 points
  50. Again, this isn’t always the case. Many instructors and mentors take on that responsibility to give back to the network. They want to see their divisions and sub-divisions succeed and have controllers online. Instructing is very rewarding when your students get certified and start controlling. It’s a necessary duty, and one that these volunteers are owed everything for taking on. While it is rewarding, it’s not really fun and can be immensely frustrating when a student doesn’t come to a session prepared.
    2 points
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