Jump to content

Vatsim controllers forgetting is common?


Ulrik Brun
 Share

Recommended Posts

Hello,

 

So i have been flying on Vatsim for quite some time and i often in the Scandinavian part of the world, hear that airplanes leave the frequency them selv without beeing told so beacuse another air traffic controller called them and asking why they was not sendt over. I have come to a conclusion and figured out that most controllers during high peak time keeps forgetting to hand off peolpe to next controllers, leaving the pilots to them selv and if the pilots try and say something the atc yells at them and says it's their fault. I don't know if it actully is the pilots fault for not hearing but i experienced this 1 time my self where atc simply forgot me same with a few others. This is not often it happens but i can clearly see Vatsim is not a place to have fun anymore can anyone else agree or is it just normal for controllers to have a little bad day? I have mostly stopped flying at Vatsim during peak hours because it oftens ends up with me listening for atc and hearing them yell at another pilot.

 

Hope i am wrong but i want to get some feedback on how ATC and pilots are supposed to behave and what todo if someone yells at another if it's not their fault.

 

Edit: I can tolerate mistakes and peolpe getting mad because they have to repeat themselv but that's not the case here

 

Best regards

Ulrik

Edited by Ulrik Brun
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It may depend on the region where you are flying at what time/day. If controllers get stressed out by a volume of traffic that they cannot handle anymore, they may get a bit angry. I have witnessed this myself at various airports/airspaces, but it has also happened to myself, when providing ATC at VATSIM. Nobody's perfect.

It should not happen and we can only stop it if pilots submit factual (not emotional) feedback to the controller in question (by private chat) or through the website/email of the affected ATC group.

Would I stop flying at VATSIM? No! Just try flying at some other place and see if people are more relaxed there. At quite a few places it is not a good idea to fly during "weekly online days", because these airports get completely swamped by traffic, which is unrealistic. I personally am not interested in waiting 30 to 45 minutes before I can depart. If you want lots of action, depart from a quiet airport and fly to one of those airports - they cannot make you hold forever.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

8 minutes ago, Andreas Fuchs said:

It may depend on the region where you are flying at what time/day. If controllers get stressed out by a volume of traffic that they cannot handle anymore, they may get a bit angry. I have witnessed this myself at various airports/airspaces, but it has also happened to myself, when providing ATC at VATSIM. Nobody's perfect.

It should not happen and we can only stop it if pilots submit factual (not emotional) feedback to the controller in question (by private chat) or through the website/email of the affected ATC group.

Would I stop flying at VATSIM? No! Just try flying at some other place and see if people are more relaxed there. At quite a few places it is not a good idea to fly during "weekly online days", because these airports get completely swamped by traffic, which is unrealistic. I personally am not interested in waiting 30 to 45 minutes before I can depart. If you want lots of action, depart from a quiet airport and fly to one of those airports - they cannot make you hold forever.

Glad to hear i'm not the only one, i will try and find some more calm places and not fly during high amount of traffic.

But it's quite impossible especlly if you are flying thru europe and have to fly thru a airspace, of course i can deviate but what's the fun and point of that?

 

Thanks for the explanation

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Board of Governors

I've unfortunately been the victim of being forgotten, and have forgotten others on rare occasion as well.  It generally only happens when things get busy, and we are working far more aircraft than a RW controller would be working.  As an example, I have one aircraft at cruise, 200+NM away from my primary airport, headed out of my airspace, and I may be dealing with a push of 10 aircraft into plus 5 more out of my primary airport, working traffic top-down (working Center all the way down to ground), plus a few at scattered Class D and C airports in my airspace.  In the RW, at least where I control, if it gets too busy for one controller to handle, another controller comes to work some of the traffic and the airspace is split.  And they don't generally do top-down 😉 In VATSIM, most times we don't have that luxury.  And honestly, any time I'm angry about it is usually self-directed -- I'm disappointed in myself that I forgot someone and provided less-than-stellar service.  But I've learned over the years that being disappointed or upset in myself is not something I want to come out on the frequency --- just for that reason -- it's not the pilot's fault they were forgotten and the only thing they should hear from me is an apology and not get any perception that they did anything wrong or that I'm angry.  It's something I've personally worked on over the years, trying not to communicate any possible perception of anger.  I'm glad I've course corrected that, and encourage all controllers to do the same.  And I apologize to anyone who I've forgotten and snapped at them, when really, I was just upset at myself.

  • Like 3

Don Desfosse
Vice President, Operations

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I haven't flown in Scandinavia during peak times lately, but I have yet to hear actual yelling on the frequency in all my 6 VATSIM years. So when you say that it happens "often" and with "most controllers", are you sure you're not exaggerating?

As for what to do, there's a .wallop command you can use in your pilot client to call a supervisor who will then deal with the situation. For example, type ".wallop ABCD_CTR is yelling at SAS123".

  • Like 1
KntU2Cw.jpg
Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 minutes ago, Dace Nicmane said:

I haven't flown in Scandinavia during peak times lately, but I have yet to hear actual yelling on the frequency in all my 6 VATSIM years. So when you say that it happens "often" and with "most controllers", are you sure you're not exaggerating?

As for what to do, there's a .wallop command you can use in your pilot client to call a supervisor who will then deal with the situation. For example, type ".wallop ABCD_CTR is yelling at SAS123".

Sorry i think i wrote a little wrong in my topic. What i mean was that most controllers during peak hours forgets a few pilots and not very often but i do hear them from time to time ATC yells and tells it's the pilots fault, and my self have not experienced being yelled at but i have experienced often atc forgets other aircraft and experienced this once my self, ATC does not always Yell like you think they do but more raising their voice and sound very angry. I did once hear the atc yell  and that was not the pilots fault, everybody has seen the youtube video where ATC basicly screams "Shut Up" over the frequency before the voice update? things like that happens but not alot.

 

Hope i made my self clear, let me know if there is anything you question about. I'm not a good writer, but i know what i have experienced.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, sometimes ATC has to take control over their voice-channel when 5 pilots keep on trying to call at the same time, despite ATC asking everyone to "standby on frequency" to make it more manageable. If people then keep on calling for unimportant stuff, a more noticeable announcement has to be made to keep the situation under control. At some point there simply is no time to have pilots calling in with "Blabla flight 1234, 37 miles Northeast of ABC, FL410, squawking 4567". Both sides have to play the game in a dynamic way: if pilots notice that a frequency is heavily congested, it's better to keep all calls short and listen out at all times to avoid missing calls. It can be quite frustrating when you need to call several pilots 2 or 3 times before they react and make their readbacks, there's not always time for this stuff. And so it might be possible that those pilots who you witnessed getting "yelled at", actually had missed several calls for frequency change or other instructions.

This is no excuse for controllers or pilots becoming aggressive on frequency, but it is an explanation.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

16 minutes ago, Andreas Fuchs said:

Well, sometimes ATC has to take control over their voice-channel when 5 pilots keep on trying to call at the same time, despite ATC asking everyone to "standby on frequency" to make it more manageable. If people then keep on calling for unimportant stuff, a more noticeable announcement has to be made to keep the situation under control. At some point there simply is no time to have pilots calling in with "Blabla flight 1234, 37 miles Northeast of ABC, FL410, squawking 4567". Both sides have to play the game in a dynamic way: if pilots notice that a frequency is heavily congested, it's better to keep all calls short and listen out at all times to avoid missing calls. It can be quite frustrating when you need to call several pilots 2 or 3 times before they react and make their readbacks, there's not always time for this stuff. And so it might be possible that those pilots who you witnessed getting "yelled at", actually had missed several calls for frequency change or other instructions.

This is no excuse for controllers or pilots becoming aggressive on frequency, but it is an explanation.

That is fully understandable, i was more reffering to if atc just raises their voice for no reasion. But i try and keep my calls short where i can.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

13 minutes ago, Dace Nicmane said:

No, I haven't. I've been living under a rock.

This video above is rather a bad example beacuse it shows that peolpe are speaking all at once witch is not the case in my topic, however there was no reasion for the atc to say "Shutup" don't think i ever heard that in real life either but agen i guess it depends who you talk to and where you are.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Ulrik Brun said:

i was more reffering to if atc just raises their voice for no reasion.

Often there is "a story" to it that is not seen or heard by other users on the frequency. I am not saying that your description was inaccurate, but maybe there was a reason to speak a little bit louder.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Ulrik Brun said:

however there was no reasion for the atc to say "Shutup" don't think i ever heard that in real life either but agen i guess it depends who you talk to and where you are.

Maybe the ATC got stepped on during a number of calls and he was just tired of people just transmitting while he was trying to issue instructions. Screaming "shut up!!" may not be the most polite way to do so, but he could have raised his voice and say "ALL STATIONS STANDBY". So, yes, there was a reason to raise his voice and take control, it simply was not that polite.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Ulrik Brun said:

there was no reasion for the atc to say "Shutup"

Yes, there was. He'd just said "break" in an already raised voice when people started talking again. And from the 30 seconds video, we don't know what happened before.

Three factors at play here:

1) VATSIM frequencies can get more crowded than real world,

2) many pilots lack radio etiquette and will talk whenever they want,

3) VATSIM ATC are not professionals either.

And after all, it's not a big deal if he screamed it once. It was actually quite funny. 😁

  • Like 2
KntU2Cw.jpg
Link to comment
Share on other sites

As a controller, I think my biggest complaint about actually controlling on VATSIM right now is radio etiquette. I can work with a pilot unfamiliar with the airport, needs vectors, progressive taxi, or whatever, but nothing frustrates me more than having to call a pilot 3 times for every single instruction. And the increase in workload is exponential when more than one pilot with bad radio etiquette is on my frequency. I don't know where this came from, my personal feeling (no data unfortunately) is that this has gotten much much worse the past 1-2 years. Instances of having to call a pilot multiple times to even get any acknowledgement (much less an good readback of instructions) has gone way up.

Task saturation is a real thing and as Don has said above, affects VATSIM controllers (particularly terminal and en-route) more acutely than RW controllers. Sometimes when a controller forgets a plane, it is just that, forgetting, but other times the overwhelming number of pilots with poor radio etiquette or even just poor aviator skills causes task saturation even with low traffic levels. Having to babysit a pilot from cruise all the way to the gate takes up as much time as working up to 5 other planes.

Soapbox moment: We (VATSIM, collectively) train controllers to very high standards, but lately, pilots (collectively, most pilots are great, but it only takes 1 or 2 to completely sink a controlling session) have not been holding up their end of the deal with how many people who are simply not prepared to fly in the environement they're trying to fly in (whether that's on the network at all, or at a busy event with an airport trying to put 40 planes on the ground an hour). Part of it is the pilots themselves, but I think a bigger issue here is structural, and VATSIM as a whole is not setting them up to succeed.

Edited by Alex Ying
  • Like 5

spacer.png

Instructor // ZNY/ZWY Facility Coordinator

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think, Alex has a point. The large influx of inexperienced pilots due to MSFS is both a blessing and a source for frustration amongst controllers, as the number of pilots has increased significanly. I hope these pilots take the time to a) learn to handle their plane, b) listen to radiocommunication and c) make their own experience using minor airfield and at times, where atc has good time to guide them. Flying to major airports at event days is not a good idea for these pilots. However, more experience pilots sometimes also step onto ongoing communication - mostly unintentional, some times due to the fact, that the volumen makes it har to avoid and I NEED FURTHER CLEARENCE NOW. 

Most important is still - this is a simulation, nobody gets hurt is something screws up, be polite, patient and ALERT to communication coming your way. If you hesitate, you are more easily interupted, because radio times is so precious, when many pilots aim to the same airports. Try to choose smaller airports - this will also improve staffing at these places, as student controllers would love to have traffic and not bore themselves to death waiting for traffic to head in their direction. But we all, atc and pilots alike tend to go for the bigger places, as these attracts more trafic.

Remember to have FUN! 

Edited by Torben Andersen
  • Like 2
  • Thanks 2

Torben Andersen, VACC-SCA Controller (C1)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 minutes ago, Torben Andersen said:

I think, Alex has a point. The large influx of inexperienced pilots due to MSFS is both a blessing and a source for frustration amongst controllers, as the number of pilots has increased significanly. I hope these pilots take the time to a) learn to handle their plane, b) listen to radiocommunication and c) make their own experience using minor airfield and at times, where atc has good time to guide them. Flying to major airports at event days is not a good idea for these pilots. However, more experience pilots sometimes also step onto ongoing communication - mostly unintentional, some times due to the fact, that the volumen makes it har to avoid and I NEED FURTHER CLEARENCE NOW. 

Most important is still - this is a simulation, nobody gets hurt is something screws up, be polite, patient and ALERT to communication coming your way. If you hesitate, you are more easily interupted, because radio times is so precious, when many pilots aim to the same airports. Try to choose smaller airports - this will also improve staffing at these places, as student controllers would love to have traffic and not bore themselves to death waiting for traffic to head in their direction. But we all, atc and pilots alike tend to go for the bigger places, as these attracts more trafic.

Remember to have FUN! 

Very good point, i have not had any issues with that. But i understand your point Vatsim is getting more and more popular and the lack of training on all parts is high. Not reffering that atc is bad but all parts could use a little training on how to not occupy the radio unnescerry

Link to comment
Share on other sites

21 hours ago, Alex Ying said:

the overwhelming number of pilots with poor radio etiquette or even just poor aviator skills causes task saturation even with low traffic levels

And the VATSIM PTD is trying to do something about that, as @Dace Nicmane knows. :)

  • Like 1

Alistair Thomson

===

Definition: a gentleman is a flying instructor in a Piper Cherokee who can change tanks without getting his face slapped.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Alistair Thomson said:

And the VATSIM PTD is trying to do something about that, as @Dace Nicmane knows. 🙂

Yep, or more controllers beacuse it's unrealistic for EHAM to have 1 controller and 170 departures, either split up the controlzone more by getting more controllers or get pilots trained but eitherway none is easy to accomplish. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I just think people must be more patient with each other! like sometimes I didnt understand what the controller said and then I must ask him to SAY AGAIN or SAY VIA TEXT then they get frustrated! I think the solution is that there should be more controllers online! like on a center there should be two people controlling like for example if boston cntr is online I think John and Tim to be online each controlling a couple sectors intead of one controlling the whole thing! there is not alot of controllers because the course takes forever and is very hard

 

People have to learn to say sorry, my bad, etc. 

remember the purpose of vatsim is not to just HAVE FUN AND JUST BE PLAYING A VIDEOGAME its to educate learn and practice.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Daniel Faria said:

I also propose that people invest there money into better mics headphones and etc. and remember not to just play around or do it in a rush

It's not always the quality of a microphone but rather the ATC that says things so fast and dosn't wait for a response before talking to next pilot, and when the pilot screw up beacuse he didn't understand and the ATC didnt listen for what the pilot said then shit happens, either way the ATC should never blame the pilot if the ATC didn't correct the pilot during his readback.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It takes up to 2 years to get a "pedestrian" trained from zero to CTR-controller. It's not a quick process and we simply do not have enough volunteer members who want to be ATCOs AND trainers/mentors/coaches. It's not like someone can order to have more ATC available...

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...