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The funniest things you have ever heard while controlling.


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Not so much funny as sad, actually. And an all-too-regular occurrence on VATSIM....

 

AAL4567: OK, we're ready to taxi.

GND: AAL4567, confirm you have the ATIS?

AAL4567: Yes.

GND: [chuckling] AAL4567, you either need to give me the ATIS code or I need to read you the weather. Which shall it be tonight?

[8 seconds of silence]

GND: AAL4567, Wind 270 at 14, visibility 10, sky clear, altimeter 2972. Runway 22R, taxi via B N, cross runway 15R.

Don Desfosse
Vice President, Membership

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It happened to me recently that I couldn't vacate the runway and couldn't figure out why. It turned out I'd landed without gear. The controller had sent me a .contactme on final and distracted me. It

meanwhile on Belux Vacc OO-BET: approach this is OO-BET declearing an emergency, engine failure. APPROACH: roger emergency services are on the way to your currect position OO-BET: ooo there's a fie

A usual occurence on Heathrow, slightly worrying some members can't seem to operate a comp[Mod - Happy Thoughts]   ATC: BAW123, Push and start approved, face North. Pilot: Push approved, face Nor

Speaking of ATIS, I always check it out on those occasions where one has been posted. Often, however, it will be expired (sometimes by almost an hour), so I'll get the current weather from the little .metar trick in xsquawkbox.

 

So once I checked the ATIS for an unnamed airport, and saw that information Delta (or whatever it was) had expired, so I got the current metar on my own. I called up the approach controller when I got close and did not mention the ATIS (because it would have technically been pointless), and he asked me to confirm receipt of info Delta. Feeling devious I told him that I had information Echo. After a pause he told me that information Delta was current and, not wanting to push it I said "Roger." He didn't seem thrilled, and he probably thought I had no idea what I was doing, but he seemed busy so I didn't push it. I probably should have let him know the situation, but I landed safely and the world continued to spin.

 

Seriously, though, I totally understand why controllers want to be sure that pilots have the current ATIS, not least of all because they spend the time recording it. But when the ATIS hasn't been updated, the whole idea of reporting that one has info "X" becomes nothing more than a game, which is annoying. Not complaining, but...

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So I have this guy on a 10-mile final for runway 19 at DCA, and I'm about to have him call the river, and then I receive this gem on the text:

 

[05:28:47] [uSA845]: i'll brb-signing off for 10 mins

 

After about a 30-second stunned pause, "USA845 just to confirm, you do realize you're landing in about two minutes, right?"

 

[uSA845]: "Oh. Okay."

ZDCARTCC S3

 

If it's not stupid then it's not worth doing.

 

Honey Badger Pilot Don't Care

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So I have this guy on a 10-mile final for runway 19 at DCA, and I'm about to have him call the river, and then I receive this gem on the text:

 

[05:28:47] [uSA845]: i'll brb-signing off for 10 mins

 

After about a 30-second stunned pause, "USA845 just to confirm, you do realize you're landing in about two minutes, right?"

 

[uSA845]: "Oh. Okay."

 

Talk about situational unawareness ...

Developer: vPilot, VRC, vSTARS, vERAM, VAT-Spy

Senior Controller, Boston Virtual ARTCC

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Talk about situational unawareness ...

 

Now in all fairness the shoe can sometimes be on the other foot....and in this case down to some missing or difficult to decipher ATC maps at the controller end.

 

My flight last night was made...interesting. Flying 4+ hours in a PC-12 from PANT to a little airfield up in Alaska called Wolf Lake (4AK6) which is around 20 miles ENE of the BGQ VOR (which itself is 25nm N of PANC). A fairly tricky approach is called for due to terrain (and really snotty weather) and it was the first time I had flown this route. After battling some rubbish headwinds all the way up I was maybe 40 miles SE of the VOR and descending to cross the VOR

for 4000' when Anchorage Center came online:

 

The general gist:

 

Me: "Hi Anchorage WAC01 with you descending through XXXX 40 miles SSE of BGQ"

ANC_CTR: "WAC01 good morning squawk xxxx fly and maintain 10000'...I'll get back to you shortly with updated METAR for your arrival and get you set up"

 

The controller had quite a few aircraft heading to major airports in the airspace at the time including a lost soul (bless him for admitting it...."I can't see anything") and that weather was deteriorating rapidly.

 

So a few more standard exchanges and given the weather I was really pleased that someone with local knowledge and a radar was going to [Mod - Happy Thoughts]ist with getting me down safe as the weather was really bad. Then we start going a bit Pete Tong as I got within 10 miles of BGQ where I was expecting a right turn east northeast to my destination :

Here's the general gist of things on voice:

 

ANC_CTR: "Whiskey01 descend to 4000' at pilots discretion and turn left 10 degrees. Expect RWY06 visual."

Me: read back etc

Here I am thinking he is setting me upfor a killer approach as the airfield I am going to has no navaids and limited lighting.

ANC_CTR: "Whiskey01 descend to 2000' airfield is 10 miles your 1'oclock call airfield in sight"

I start down and break through the overcast to some really bouncy air and a howling snowstorm. I pause a second...quickly look at my other PC screen with the charts, check FS Commander, and look at my cockpit FMS and map

Me: "Ummm ANC_CTR my final destination is Wolf Lake 4-Alpha-Kilo-6 and I show it approx 30 miles NNE of current position"

 

Silence

 

ANC_CTR: "Whiskey01 rgr there may be a chart problem here. Turn right xx and I'll get right back to you"

Me: "ANC_CTR roger request resume own navigation until corrected"

ANC_CTR: "Whiskey01 resume own nav and stand by for further instruction"

 

So bouncing about I reset my course...fortunately the terrain is wide open and I am able to quickly turn to the general heading of the airfield. Visibility was rubbish but at least I could see the ground .

 

And to the controllers credit once he figured out what the map issue was (I think he mentioned there was some missing detail at his end for whatever technical reason) he got me lined up for a easy visual approach and with a sigh of relief I landed without incident.

 

While perhaps not an overly "funny" incident....I was chuckling in my virtual cockpit and I am pretty sure the very skilled and pleasant ANC_CTR controller had a good ole giggle as well!

 

And situational awareness is always key at both ends. The controller had his hands full dealing with airliners and another GA plane and having to sort out a mis-located airport for a non-standard approach while multitasking the above in really rubbish weather with difficult terrain restrictions takes a ton of skill.

 

Bravo Zulu on the recovery there ANC_CTR....it made for a highly interesting and entertaining end to my flight

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I loved this last night....

XXX GND: Delta 1234, cleared to Yadda via heading 320 on departure, radar vectors YADDA, then as filed. Maintain 5000, expect FL260 ten minutes after departure, departure 123.45, squawk 2108.

DAL1234: Roger cleared to Yadda via heading 320 on departure, radar vectors YADDA, then as filed. Maintain 5000, expect FL260 ten minutes after departure, departure 123.45, squawk 2108.

XXX GND: Delta 1234, readback correct, call when ready to taxi, with Echo.

 

I sat and waited, and waited and waited, figuring at least one of them would figure it out, and then I finally couldn't help myself....

 

Me: Ground, you sure you want to give him that squawk code?

XXX GND: I'm not sure what you're talking about, but his code is fine.

 

So I waited about another 10 seconds to see if either the controller or the pilot would figure it out..... Nope.....

 

Me: OK, sorry about that. I must have some old equipment in this old bird, and not one of them newfangled transponders. The digits in my old transponder only go up to 7....

 

after about a 6 second pause....

 

XXX GND: [laughing] Oh boy.... It's been a long night! DAL1234, how about a squawk of something a little different, like how about maybe 2110....

 

Don Desfosse
Vice President, Membership

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~ Pilot over frequency - "Cleveland Center, We're just taking off from Cleveland, runway 24L, on our way to Lambo field for the game, do we need to talk to you?" RP - "vatsim.net/prc -- Learn it, love it, live it, oh and while you're there, get off the runway please, unless you want to be mince meat for that 747 on final."

 

Cheers!

Rahul

Rahul Parkar

"On second thoughts Nappa, catch it, catch it with your teeth" -- Vegeta

Professional Nerd. (Professionally not professional)

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~ Pilot over frequency - "Cleveland Center, We're just taking off from Cleveland, runway 24L, on our way to Lambo field for the game, do we need to talk to you?" RP - "vatsim.net/prc -- Learn it, love it, live it, oh and while you're there, get off the runway please, unless you want to be mince meat for that 747 on final."

 

A gem!

Miguel Frias

Senior Instructor (I3) & Certified Pilot (P4), ZLA I-11 graduate

Portugal vACC Training Director (ACCPT2), VATEUD Operations Director (VATEUD8)

Portugal vACC, VATEUD, VATSIM

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Hehe,

 

I would have been a bit nicer with the runway issue, but I had a bad day, no real excuse but heh, I'm human.

 

Cheers!

Rahul

Rahul Parkar

"On second thoughts Nappa, catch it, catch it with your teeth" -- Vegeta

Professional Nerd. (Professionally not professional)

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I loved this last night....

XXX GND: Delta 1234, cleared to Yadda via heading 320 on departure, radar vectors YADDA, then as filed. Maintain 5000, expect FL260 ten minutes after departure, departure 123.45, squawk 2108.

DAL1234: Roger cleared to Yadda via heading 320 on departure, radar vectors YADDA, then as filed. Maintain 5000, expect FL260 ten minutes after departure, departure 123.45, squawk 2108.

XXX GND: Delta 1234, readback correct, call when ready to taxi, with Echo.

 

I sat and waited, and waited and waited, figuring at least one of them would figure it out, and then I finally couldn't help myself....

 

Me: Ground, you sure you want to give him that squawk code?

XXX GND: I'm not sure what you're talking about, but his code is fine.

 

So I waited about another 10 seconds to see if either the controller or the pilot would figure it out..... Nope.....

 

Me: OK, sorry about that. I must have some old equipment in this old bird, and not one of them newfangled transponders. The digits in my old transponder only go up to 7....

 

after about a 6 second pause....

 

XXX GND: [laughing] Oh boy.... It's been a long night! DAL1234, how about a squawk of something a little different, like how about maybe 2110....

 

 

The issue with this was that VRC had told [the controller in question] that [the controller in question] ran out of squawk codes in [anonymous'] bank (later found the issue to be an unchecked "randomize squawk codes" box due to a new session profile) and [suzy Q] had been giving pilots manual codes from the beginning of what [Art Vandalay] understood was the bank (2100, 2101, 2102, etc.)

 

I will never forget that... HOWEVER, what Mr Defosse elected to leave out of this was the fact that stupid old [anonymous] defended it:

 

XXX GND: DAL1234, I'm not exactly sure what's going on here, but just to be safe, the code again is 2-1-0-8, twenty one oh eight.

DAL1234: Yup, that's 2108 for DAL1234.

XXX GND: Thank you.

 

Glad to see that someone was paying attention to it, though. I sure wasn't! I'll be good next time, though! I promise!!!

Chad Gurchinoff - vZDC ARTCC C1 Controller

KLYH Lynchburg, Virginia

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On Bristol - I just had someone in an A380 call up with "at 4000 feet request landing" - I couldn't see him so requested a location "on final" was the reply. I instructed him to divert to Filton (as Bristol's runway can't take an A380 - Filton is the nearest that can) which he accepted - eventually located him, he was trying to approach Gatwick in the opposite direction to the traffic so I handed him to London for onward service

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Me (controlling IAD/DCA Approach the other day): ASQ5781, the field is at your 2 O'Clock moving to 1 O'Clock, 9 miles, report in sight.

ASQ5781: We're looking, but how can the airport be moving?

Me: No, it's you that's moving, but your position relative to the field is moving. That's how the sun* works.

 

I also pulled a nice little practical joke on a pilot to see if he would catch on:

 

Me (covering IAD/DCA Approach, and providing top-down for both, same day, about an hour or two later) on frequency 119.85: AWE1430, cleared for the river visual runway 19 approach, contact tower 119.85.

AWE1430: Over to 119.85, we'll see you next time, thanks for the ATC.

[short pause]

AWE1430: Oh, right.

 

*The Sun is a bit of a tough one because it's really the Earth's position in relation to the Sun that affects where the sun is; if I stood in the same spot all day, my position on the Earth doesn't change, but the Earth's rotation leads to me being on the side of the Earth facing away from the sun by the end of the day.

ZDCARTCC S3

 

If it's not stupid then it's not worth doing.

 

Honey Badger Pilot Don't Care

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