Interesting information on turbulence

Hi Keith and all, 

I regualrly check in to this site and everyone really helped me get through my long haul flights late last year from Melbourne to Europe. I saw on the news telecast tonight (in Melbourne) there was a change in safety checks from australias civil aviation authority CASA. I found this interesting and read that it is due to new planes not needing as many checks, which makes sense to me. 
I found some interesting info on the CASA website about turbulence - in my experience turbulence can be scary when you don't know what it is and Keith your pod casts and book have really helped to normalize this for me. it's uncomfortable but not dangerous!! 
Yet, the information I found on the CASA website has amazed me

I thought Keith you might be able to comment on this? I didn't think there was such a thing as an air pocket? And nowhere do they reassure you that it's not dangerous, so I found this very interesting! This is a government website too


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Comment by Captain Keith on June 15, 2014 at 10:32pm

There's no storm that's too wide to avoid


Comment by Billyboy on June 15, 2014 at 7:01pm
What happens when a pilot faces a storm front that it's too wide to avoid it?
Comment by Captain Keith on June 20, 2012 at 8:08pm

I agree...too many casual comments around flying generally. Especially by the pro's


Comment by David Wragg on June 14, 2012 at 11:04pm

It does seem a bit cack-handed, especially for something that is meant to help passengers ('A jet hit air turbulence ...' - as opposed to 'jelly' turbulence maybe?). I can only think it's a long-winded way of alarming passengers into wearing their seatbelts for the whole flight and therefore reducing the cost of injuries claims.

Comment by Tracey Mck on June 14, 2012 at 10:54am
Thank you so much or your responses Keith. I too was amazed, especially as it is the government civil aviation website for this country. But what I take from it is my reaction to it, a couple of years ago I would have worried about this taking it as the truth, however my research and help from your resources means I can take emotion out of it and view it properly, as poorly informed emotive information. I have flown quite a few times now and I have never experienced anything more than a few bumps- and I always chant the mantra that it's uncomfortable but not dangerous. Btw- the A380 is a fabulous aircraft and I can say I found myself enjoying it.

Comment by Captain Keith on June 14, 2012 at 9:32am

Hi Tracy

I have to say this is the most extraordinary comment I've ever seen on an official web site. The advice seems  more directed at inexperienced pilots where this sort of 'warning' may have some value.

And as for quoting a passenger who was on board an aircraft during turbulence is like asking a nervous patient what he/she thinks are the problems associated with open heart surgery.

I have read the article thru' several times and it gets worse each time I read it.

There is no mention as to the frequency of the sort of turbulence that they describe as extreme....which is a term that I never encountered when flying. When describing anything as extreme one is free to speculate wildly because that is the nature of the word 'extreme' .

I need to add something to each statement to expose the weaknesses of this report.

It cannot always be foreseen so there is no warning. This is assuming that if it can't be seen that it's going to be the worst sort of turbulence...why should that be? Always  (and never)  is a powerful word and is best confined to domestic arguments where you say " you never buy me flowers" and " you always come home late".

It is usually felt at its mildest in the flight deck and is generally more severe in the aft section.This defies the laws of motion as far as I can see. Sure it feels better in the flight deck because the crew are occupied with their tasks...I've seen very nervous passengers feel much better when they've visited the flight deck during light would be the same under more bumpy's a question of the mind being occupied. More severe in the aft section would mean that the back is doing something different from the front ...planes don't bend. BUT it would FEEL worse in the back because you're at the end of a lever (see-saw) the turbulence would be the same. The accellerations would be only slightly more.

It can occur when no clouds are visible. So what?

Aircraft radars can't detect it. Not true...but the radars aren't yet installed.

It is common at high altitudes, where cruising airline suddenly enter turbulent areas. This statement links two events each of which is true but not necessarily related.(it doesn't mean that  each time it enters turbulence that it's going to be extreme turbulence.)

It's true that boxers punch people...but they don't do it in the supermarket!   This argument is false.

The paragraph starts with 

There are several notable problems with clear air turbulence: Are they problems or facts though?

There are problems with washing up if you fill the sink with sulphuric acid and not water. There are problems if you walk down the road with your pyjamas on. There are problems in life. And this report is one of them. Disregard!

I hope this helps you.

Captain Keith


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