ORNGE. Question

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Brown Bear
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ORNGE. Question

Post by Brown Bear »

Okay, I'm curious. Don't mean to come off as rude here, but. We followed one of your PC12's into YXL yesterday. You had a 19 mile lead on us and we still had to "slow to minimum safe speed..." To follow you.
Question: At what speed do you fly an approach?
Not to be rude, but we were 19 miles behind the PC12 when he hit the initial fix (15 miles to landing).
I've never flown a PC12, but it seems to me it'd make sense to fly at a fairly high speed to the FAF, then slow?
One more quick question: is it SOP for you not to cancel IFR in good weather (good VMC) with traffic behind you?
Don't take this wrong....just curious.
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Grey_Wolf
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Re: ORNGE. Question

Post by Grey_Wolf »

I don't fly for ORNGE, but I flew out of YXL for a number of years on the PC-12/45 (I feel your pain :wink: )

Here's some of the numbers (KIAS):

VMO - 236 (0.48 Mach)
VO - 158 (9921 lbs), 151 (9039 lbs)
VFE - 163 (15' Flap), 130 (40' Flap)
VLO - 177
VLE - 236
VS - 91
VSO - 64
VX - 110
VY - 120 (dropping 5 kts for every 5000' above 10,000')
VR - 79 (15' Flap), 73 (30' Flap)
VREF - 118 (0' Flap), 98 (15' Flap), 89 (30' Flap), 84 (40' Flap), 108 (15' Flap + Ice Mode)
VREF - Ice accretion 108, 134 if boots failed
Holding - 150, clean
I've never flown a PC12, but it seems to me it'd make sense to fly at a fairly high speed to the FAF, then slow?
Depends, on your company's profile I guess. The operator that I worked for, SOP for IMC was to slow to 150 KIAS for the procedure turn (if required), slow to 120 intercepting the inbound, and slowing to Vref+15 past the FAF. Low visibility circuit was to be done at 120 KIAS. VFR on the other hand was "go fast" to the FAF, slowing for 160, then "flap, gear, flap".
One more quick question: is it SOP for you not to cancel IFR in good weather (good VMC) with traffic behind you?
Comes down to SOP's and Company Policy again. I'd argue that airmanship should play a role in influencing your decision.



With that said, I'd like to think that most operator's have in their SOP's, a line that goes a little something like this:

"SOP's have been produced to maintain a basic standard of flying. They are also intended to facilitate a safe and efficient operation. Deviations from the SOP's may be necessary under certain circumstances; however, the procedures listed in the SOP shall not restrict the pilot's authority, nor their ultimate responsibility for the safe operation of a flight."

Have to ask yourself: Cancelling IFR on a VFR day, although it may be against your SOP, does it really detract from safety? Understand that when you fly IFR/IMC, you are in a system; a system designed to move planes efficiently. When you cancel IFR, you are now responsible for traffic and obstacle clearance. Is this increase in workload so much that it distracts?

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Brown Bear
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Re: ORNGE. Question

Post by Brown Bear »

Thanks grey wolf. My thoughts on flying a single....why be at 100 knots ten miles out? It turns a reasonable glider into a piano. As for airmanship.....well, I've given up expecting any.
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Brown Bear
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Re: ORNGE. Question

Post by Brown Bear »

Why the use of the word "medevac" on each and every transmission. I've flown a few in my time, and the "medevac" is required only on initial contact.....and then ONLY if you are actually medevac status. I suspect you are not, at least half the time.
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jpilot77
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Re: ORNGE. Question

Post by jpilot77 »

We operate a PC-12NG and usually keep it around 170 (usually at ATC request) till the FAF, then slow it down to 120 till short final.
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Re: ORNGE. Question

Post by Brown Bear »

jpilot77 wrote:We operate a PC-12NG and usually keep it around 170 (usually at ATC request) till the FAF, then slow it down to 120 till short final.
That's how I'd fly it. These guys missed the memo.
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X-Savior
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Re: ORNGE. Question

Post by X-Savior »

Brown Bear, we have sat down for a few breakfasts together and I can only agree with you... We have all felt the pain and as for Ornge those memo's most likely have been forgotten when half the management is busy trying to stay on the right side of the law...

But I do have to admit, I have seen far worse from a particular controller in YQT who loves to reduce everyone to minimum speed way out if there is 5 aircraft inbound then all of a sudden it is best speed to final for everyone... just poor planning... I would say airmanship but I am not sure if that even counts for ground based crews lol...
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Re: ORNGE. Question

Post by kevenv »

Brown Bear wrote:Why the use of the word "medevac" on each and every transmission. I've flown a few in my time, and the "medevac" is required only on initial contact.....and then ONLY if you are actually medevac status. I suspect you are not, at least half the time.
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If the a/c is filed as a Medevac or the a/c tells us he is a Medevac, we are not allowed to drop it after initial contact. It must be used on every transmission to the a/c.

MANOPS 216.4
Do not omit the priority term MEDEVAC for
medical evacuation flights.
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Salt
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Re: ORNGE. Question

Post by Salt »

Sorry Brown Bear, from the A.I.M:

Medical Evacuation Flights (MEDEVAC):

(a) Initial contact: The manufacturer’s name or type of aircraft or operator’s radiotelephony designator, followed by:

(i) the flight number and the word MEDEVAC, or

(ii) the last four characters of the aircraft registration and the word MEDEVAC. Examples: Austin 101 MEDEVAC (AUSTIN ONE ZERO ONE MEDEVAC) Cessna FABC MEDEVAC (CESSNA FOXTROT ALFA BRAVO CHARLIE MEDEVAC).

(c) Subsequent communications: May be abbreviated as per normal procedures, retaining the word MEDEVAC


Used to fly Medevac on the PC12 out of YXL as well.
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Brown Bear
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Re: ORNGE. Question

Post by Brown Bear »

So then, every leg they fly, they do so as medevac status? Calling a big BS on that one. More like avoiding nav canada fees ?
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timel
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Re: ORNGE. Question

Post by timel »

I've had couple holds behind Jazz or waiting to t-o in non controled areas because they wouldn't cancel on marginal vfr days
D-8 probably approaches 130 kts 10 nm finals...

But I guess when you have that many pilots it's SOPs all the way down.
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Re: ORNGE. Question

Post by Brown Bear »

timel wrote:I've had couple holds behind Jazz or waiting to t-o in non controled areas because they wouldn't cancel on marginal vfr days
D-8 probably approaches 130 kts 10 nm finals...

But I guess when you have that many pilots it's SOPs all the way down.
Yes, I think it SOP not to cancel. Air Canada never cancels. Guess most large airlines don't. Smaller operations tend to cancel out of courtesy for others. aka airmanship. Most of us don't pick up IFR clearances before we're ready to taxi either? Anything to be number one to the runway, I guess. Guess nobody at ORNGE cares to field my original questions?
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Re: ORNGE. Question

Post by SmokinJoe »

It's tough to say what the issue was. Do you think turbulence could have been the issue as to why they were going so slow? I know the PC12 is horrible in turbulence and I usually slow to 200KIAS or less when I get into it or if it's real bad than 150KIAS or less. With Ornge flights I don't know their SOP's in regards to filing Medevac but I do know that they carry critical care paramedics and usually only do critical calls. The other carriers that do medevac don't carry critical care paramedics (or at least they are not practicing to the critical level of care), that being said it's entirely possible that an Ornge flight is Medevac status when they say they are. Same goes for the other carriers. They may pick up a patient who is in stable condition but that can and sometimes deteriorates in flight and they will upgrade to Medevac status.

Now this is kinda up in the air but if say you are a Ornge pilot and you get a call to pick up a critical patient, would you think it's prudent to declare your flight as Medevac when you depart empty to pick up the patient so you get to your destination without delay? That I think is where a lot of the animosity comes from. When people see a crew boarding a "medevac" and you can see that they did not load a patient but declared them selves as medevac.

I don't fly for Ornge but I do fly for a Medevac provider. It is a judgement call. From what I know from my medics is it prudent to potentially delay other flights so we get to where we are going with out delay. Sometimes turbulence is a issue with say a patient with a broken back or something like that would require us to try and make the flight as smooth as possible. Or altitude restricted to have a sea level cabin with a patient with swelling in the brain. I can't speak for every medevac pilot but I try and do what I can to get the patient to a hosp without causing them more harm.

I hope this gives some insight into why Medevac's do what they do some times.
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Re: ORNGE. Question

Post by Maynard »

I was ahead of ORNGE by a minute once, so naturally we were told to slow by 20-30 knots, and would be #2. It was 8000ovc or so, so we cancelled when we broke out and followed them in. After they landed, they all got off the plane, went inside the terminal and read a newspaper. Must have been some important articles... :roll:
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Re: ORNGE. Question

Post by Lost Lake »

Not sure I agree about the important call out that supercedes other medevacs. In the little experience I had, patients were not transported until stabilized and packaged. Our job was not to save lives, our job was to fly crew and patients safely. `Medevac`does save landing fees and does help expedite the trip. Not cancelling IFR in good weather is just plane (pun) rude.
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Re: ORNGE. Question

Post by SmokinJoe »

Lost Lake wrote:Not sure I agree about the important call out that supercedes other medevacs. In the little experience I had, patients were not transported until stabilized and packaged. Our job was not to save lives, our job was to fly crew and patients safely. `Medevac`does save landing fees and does help expedite the trip. Not cancelling IFR in good weather is just plane (pun) rude.

True. I agree not canceling IFR is poor airmanship. Maybe they just forgot to? Maybe the didn't like the sound of your call sign, who knows. As far as the whole medevac thing goes, you just never know what is going on on board that aircraft. Just because a patient is stable enough to transfer dosent mean they won't crash enroute. It does happen from time to time.

You would think that because a patient if being transported from lets say a nursing station where the nurses suspect something, then the medics on board find out it's something else. I have picked up quite a few patients that were "stable" only to find out, after the medics had them on board that they are having a heart attack. There are also times when you are dispatched to pick up a patient and lo and behold when you land no ambulance is waiting for you. That could be a time when a "medevac" flight lands and you see a crew reading a paper in the terminal. There are lots of scenarios out there and things can change in a instant. It's the nature of the business. There are also just ignorant pilots out there too.
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Re: ORNGE. Question

Post by Doc »

Well, SmokinJoe........there is NO patient on board at all for roughly 50% of legs flown. On at least 30% of the rest of the flights, they are most likely NOT priority medevac status.
I've flown many medevacs my friend.....many are NOT priority!
And yet.....EVERY SINGLE LEG these guys fly seem to be priority medevac flights?????
You buy that?
The biggest abuse of the system I've seen. And, pretty much ZERO airmanship.
Maybe "they just forgot...." Seriously?
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DanB
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Re: ORNGE. Question

Post by DanB »

Hi all,

I worked a brief stint with ORNGE a couple years back when things were at their most interesting. With regards to the above topics I figured I could formulate a bit of a response.

The PC12/NG is capable of the same speeds as the previous models however the Honeywell avionics (which are phenomenal, btw) log any and all exceedences requiring them to the explained and cleared by maintenance and explained. Given this, culture there was to give limitations a wider birth than I remember from flying with another PC12 operator in Ontario. While very aware someone is closing in from behind it's not feasible to fly much faster than the normal.

Calling MEDEVAC I believe stemmed from the inception of ORNGE. While not being a part of company SOPs during my time, the explanation I was given was that the aircraft and advanced/critical care paramedics are vital assets of the provincial medical response system and needed to be in position at base as much as possible. If using MEDEVAC saw the assets back on the ground and ready to respond to another call then it was encouraged. This was particularly important when operating with a CCP or when sharing paramedics with the helicopters in YQT -- the latter being hotly contested when I was there. Personally I felt it very rarely made any difference; and YWG began asking if we were 'Priority MEDEVAC', terminology which I never really understood.

Finally with regards to canceling IFR when VMC, I recall the SOP being similar to those of the 705 airline I currently fly for where so long as VMC existed, canceling was left up to the PIC on the condition we maintained alerting services. Basic airmanship. I am acutely aware of this now as with the current operator we are not permitted to depart VFR with intentions to pick up the IFR in the air. This can mean a long wait in YTS if an IFR is held on a nice day.

Good bunch at ORNGE and it was time in my book I look upon fondly. Reasonable pay, terrific benefits, and a good schedule. Also refreshing not having to chase per diems or a performance bonus(mileage). I'd recommended it to anyone with the understanding you're not going to clock much more than 500 hours a year and you can embrace living in YXL/YQT/YTS.

Best Regards.
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Re: ORNGE. Question

Post by D_Thissen »

I was flying around YQT a few month back. I heard pulse call centre when they leveled off, centre asked to confirm if they were 'medevac' or not and the response went something like 'nope we aren't, sorry just used to saying it'

I'm waiting to hear 'Pulse trainer 1 medevac' Lol
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