|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||0601 To 1200|
|Locale Reference||airport : pbi|
|Altitude||msl bound lower : 1500|
msl bound upper : 1500
|Controlling Facilities||tracon : pbi|
|Operator||common carrier : air carrier|
|Make Model Name||Medium Large Transport, Low Wing, 2 Turbojet Eng|
|Flight Phase||descent : approach|
|Route In Use||enroute : on vectors|
|Affiliation||company : air carrier|
|Function||flight crew : captain|
oversight : pic
|Qualification||pilot : atp|
|Experience||flight time last 90 days : 200|
flight time total : 13000
flight time type : 4000
|Function||flight crew : first officer|
|Qualification||pilot : instrument|
pilot : commercial
|Anomaly||other anomaly other|
other spatial deviation
|Independent Detector||other flight crewa|
|Resolutory Action||controller : issued new clearance|
|Primary Problem||ATC Human Performance|
|Air Traffic Incident||other|
Poor ATC radar vectors caused a missed approach and made an already stressed controller completely overloaded. Pbi approach vectored us to a position about 1.5 mi outside the FAF (keach) and north of the course. There was a significant wind from the north (surface 3512g27), and the assigned intercept heading of 290 degrees was insufficient to intercept course outside the FAF. WX at the time at our position was solid clouds and we did not have either the shoreline or the airport in sight. When we informed the controller we were at the FAF distance but well south of course controller asked if we could see the airport. When we replied, 'no,' controller asked if we wanted to get vectors around again. We said we saw no other alternative. Controller assigned a heading of 280 degrees which we read back and maintained (virtually straight ahead). The first officer questioned the heading (to me), so I tried to ask the controller, but controller was so busy I couldn't get on the frequency. Finally we were switched to a new controller on a different and less congested frequency. Unfortunately controller gave us vectors to approximately the same location and again assigned heading 290 degrees to intercept! This time we saw it coming, or rather we saw it (the backcourse centerline) not coming, and so, we slowed our rate of turn to 290 degrees. Even with our help we were at the FAF when the backcourse centerline made its first movement off the wall we were able to land from that approach, and I suggested to tower they should use a more northerly intercept heading in view of the wind. Controller was so busy the controller couldn't do it right the first time, so they had to take time to do it again. Telling to confirm any questionable instruction is no help if the controller is too stressed to listen to the request for confirmation. That's probably how controller missed the readback!
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: MLG HAD TO BE VECTORED FOR BACK COURSE APCH TWICE DUE TO STRONG WIND AND POOR CTLR TECHNIQUE.
Narrative: POOR ATC RADAR VECTORS CAUSED A MISSED APCH AND MADE AN ALREADY STRESSED CTLR COMPLETELY OVERLOADED. PBI APCH VECTORED US TO A POS ABOUT 1.5 MI OUTSIDE THE FAF (KEACH) AND N OF THE COURSE. THERE WAS A SIGNIFICANT WIND FROM THE N (SURFACE 3512G27), AND THE ASSIGNED INTERCEPT HDG OF 290 DEGS WAS INSUFFICIENT TO INTERCEPT COURSE OUTSIDE THE FAF. WX AT THE TIME AT OUR POS WAS SOLID CLOUDS AND WE DID NOT HAVE EITHER THE SHORELINE OR THE ARPT IN SIGHT. WHEN WE INFORMED THE CTLR WE WERE AT THE FAF DISTANCE BUT WELL S OF COURSE CTLR ASKED IF WE COULD SEE THE ARPT. WHEN WE REPLIED, 'NO,' CTLR ASKED IF WE WANTED TO GET VECTORS AROUND AGAIN. WE SAID WE SAW NO OTHER ALTERNATIVE. CTLR ASSIGNED A HDG OF 280 DEGS WHICH WE READ BACK AND MAINTAINED (VIRTUALLY STRAIGHT AHEAD). THE F/O QUESTIONED THE HDG (TO ME), SO I TRIED TO ASK THE CTLR, BUT CTLR WAS SO BUSY I COULDN'T GET ON THE FREQ. FINALLY WE WERE SWITCHED TO A NEW CTLR ON A DIFFERENT AND LESS CONGESTED FREQ. UNFORTUNATELY CTLR GAVE US VECTORS TO APPROX THE SAME LOCATION AND AGAIN ASSIGNED HDG 290 DEGS TO INTERCEPT! THIS TIME WE SAW IT COMING, OR RATHER WE SAW IT (THE BACKCOURSE CENTERLINE) NOT COMING, AND SO, WE SLOWED OUR RATE OF TURN TO 290 DEGS. EVEN WITH OUR HELP WE WERE AT THE FAF WHEN THE BACKCOURSE CENTERLINE MADE ITS FIRST MOVEMENT OFF THE WALL WE WERE ABLE TO LAND FROM THAT APCH, AND I SUGGESTED TO TWR THEY SHOULD USE A MORE NORTHERLY INTERCEPT HDG IN VIEW OF THE WIND. CTLR WAS SO BUSY THE CTLR COULDN'T DO IT RIGHT THE FIRST TIME, SO THEY HAD TO TAKE TIME TO DO IT AGAIN. TELLING TO CONFIRM ANY QUESTIONABLE INSTRUCTION IS NO HELP IF THE CTLR IS TOO STRESSED TO LISTEN TO THE REQUEST FOR CONFIRMATION. THAT'S PROBABLY HOW CTLR MISSED THE READBACK!
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.