|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||1801 To 2400|
|Locale Reference||atc facility : pvd|
airport : ocwd
|Controlling Facilities||artcc : zbw|
|Operator||general aviation : corporate|
|Make Model Name||Small Aircraft, Low Wing, 1 Eng, Retractable Gear|
|Flight Phase||cruise other|
|Route In Use||enroute : on vectors|
|Function||flight crew : single pilot|
|Qualification||pilot : instrument|
pilot : commercial
|Experience||flight time last 90 days : 150|
flight time total : 4500
|Affiliation||government : faa|
|Function||controller : radar|
|Qualification||controller : radar|
|Anomaly||non adherence : clearance|
other anomaly other
|Independent Detector||other controllera|
|Resolutory Action||controller : issued new clearance|
flight crew : exited penetrated airspace
|Primary Problem||Flight Crew Human Performance|
|Air Traffic Incident||Pilot Deviation|
|ATC Facility||procedure or policy : unspecified|
Small aircraft was inbound direct to pvd to transition to a runway 35 localizer approach to owd. The route was chosen specifically for its intrinsic simplicity. The problem developed when the route was changed and I could not (for various reasons) accept clearance as quickly as the controller wanted. Continual interruptions by the controller prevented me from concentrating to consumate the requested change. The situation deteriorated into one of defending myself on frequency for not having low altitude charts. They were misplaced at the time. He had no idea how terrible the cockpit lighting was, and the pressures of a rough engine, among other factors. The situation finally reached crisis proportions and I went on with the business of flying. The psychological pressure was intense and its implications continued to affect me and dominate my concentration for the rest of the flight. I arrived so disoriented and disturbed that I had to continually fight my basic instincts for orientation. I later departed runway 17 at owd and circled the airport while making several attempts to secure departure clearance to bgr. The confusion returned and I turned northbound instead of southbound while talking to the controller for clearance. I erroneously told the departure controller I was at 2000', causing him to believe I was in the bos TCA. He very professionally and immediately vectored me away. I appreciated his service. Then, however, he did ask if I was familiar with the bos TCA. Again, that request served no purpose in flight except to generate psychological pressure (or perhaps to gather testimonial evidence). That pressure did not have the intense effect of the previous experience, but it could equally lead to cumulative effects. I am grateful that the descent pressure did not happen at lower altitudes in WX and mountainous terrain! My suggestion is for controllers to perceive of themselves as assistants and empathize with pilots and not to become judgemental or 'traffic cop.' pilots, almost universally, want to do their job well and will do so with some help when necessary. (The converse applies equally, of course.) controllers are in a unique position of authority. They must never, ever apply psychological stress which serves no purpose except the generation of stress itself! Whereas the aim specifically states that pilots should understand clrncs before acceptance, practice has evolved that acceptance occurs first and then the pilot figures out what he has accepted. Controllers have grown to expect that result, but they should understand that there is likely good reason when pilots are slow to accept.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: GA SMA UNAUTH PENETRATION OF AIRSPACE AND NON ADHERENCE TO ATC CLRNC.
Narrative: SMA WAS INBOUND DIRECT TO PVD TO TRANSITION TO A RWY 35 LOC APCH TO OWD. THE ROUTE WAS CHOSEN SPECIFICALLY FOR ITS INTRINSIC SIMPLICITY. THE PROB DEVELOPED WHEN THE ROUTE WAS CHANGED AND I COULD NOT (FOR VARIOUS REASONS) ACCEPT CLRNC AS QUICKLY AS THE CTLR WANTED. CONTINUAL INTERRUPTIONS BY THE CTLR PREVENTED ME FROM CONCENTRATING TO CONSUMATE THE REQUESTED CHANGE. THE SITUATION DETERIORATED INTO ONE OF DEFENDING MYSELF ON FREQ FOR NOT HAVING LOW ALT CHARTS. THEY WERE MISPLACED AT THE TIME. HE HAD NO IDEA HOW TERRIBLE THE COCKPIT LIGHTING WAS, AND THE PRESSURES OF A ROUGH ENG, AMONG OTHER FACTORS. THE SITUATION FINALLY REACHED CRISIS PROPORTIONS AND I WENT ON WITH THE BUSINESS OF FLYING. THE PSYCHOLOGICAL PRESSURE WAS INTENSE AND ITS IMPLICATIONS CONTINUED TO AFFECT ME AND DOMINATE MY CONCENTRATION FOR THE REST OF THE FLT. I ARRIVED SO DISORIENTED AND DISTURBED THAT I HAD TO CONTINUALLY FIGHT MY BASIC INSTINCTS FOR ORIENTATION. I LATER DEPARTED RWY 17 AT OWD AND CIRCLED THE ARPT WHILE MAKING SEVERAL ATTEMPTS TO SECURE DEP CLRNC TO BGR. THE CONFUSION RETURNED AND I TURNED NBOUND INSTEAD OF SBND WHILE TALKING TO THE CTLR FOR CLRNC. I ERRONEOUSLY TOLD THE DEP CTLR I WAS AT 2000', CAUSING HIM TO BELIEVE I WAS IN THE BOS TCA. HE VERY PROFESSIONALLY AND IMMEDIATELY VECTORED ME AWAY. I APPRECIATED HIS SVC. THEN, HOWEVER, HE DID ASK IF I WAS FAMILIAR WITH THE BOS TCA. AGAIN, THAT REQUEST SERVED NO PURPOSE IN FLT EXCEPT TO GENERATE PSYCHOLOGICAL PRESSURE (OR PERHAPS TO GATHER TESTIMONIAL EVIDENCE). THAT PRESSURE DID NOT HAVE THE INTENSE EFFECT OF THE PREVIOUS EXPERIENCE, BUT IT COULD EQUALLY LEAD TO CUMULATIVE EFFECTS. I AM GRATEFUL THAT THE DSCNT PRESSURE DID NOT HAPPEN AT LOWER ALTS IN WX AND MOUNTAINOUS TERRAIN! MY SUGGESTION IS FOR CTLRS TO PERCEIVE OF THEMSELVES AS ASSISTANTS AND EMPATHIZE WITH PLTS AND NOT TO BECOME JUDGEMENTAL OR 'TFC COP.' PLTS, ALMOST UNIVERSALLY, WANT TO DO THEIR JOB WELL AND WILL DO SO WITH SOME HELP WHEN NECESSARY. (THE CONVERSE APPLIES EQUALLY, OF COURSE.) CTLRS ARE IN A UNIQUE POSITION OF AUTHORITY. THEY MUST NEVER, EVER APPLY PSYCHOLOGICAL STRESS WHICH SERVES NO PURPOSE EXCEPT THE GENERATION OF STRESS ITSELF! WHEREAS THE AIM SPECIFICALLY STATES THAT PLTS SHOULD UNDERSTAND CLRNCS BEFORE ACCEPTANCE, PRACTICE HAS EVOLVED THAT ACCEPTANCE OCCURS FIRST AND THEN THE PLT FIGURES OUT WHAT HE HAS ACCEPTED. CTLRS HAVE GROWN TO EXPECT THAT RESULT, BUT THEY SHOULD UNDERSTAND THAT THERE IS LIKELY GOOD REASON WHEN PLTS ARE SLOW TO ACCEPT.
Data retrieved from NASA's ASRS site as of August 2007 and automatically converted to unabbreviated mixed upper/lowercase text. This report is for informational purposes with no guarantee of accuracy. See NASA's ASRS site for official report.