AA unique problems at ASE / Aspen Airport? Refund problems.

 
Old Aug 7, 15, 9:24 am
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AA unique problems at ASE / Aspen Airport? Refund problems.

On 8/4/15 my flight from LAX to Aspen (Envoy Air As American Eagle) 3351 wast at first delayed. The pilot explained there was an equipment problem at ASE, because they were installing a new antenna. Some passengers called ASE operations and were told the Airport was operating normally and planes landing in excellent weather. A passenger mentioned this to an attendant and strangely the captain announced that if anyone thought he was lying they should get off the plane as he would not tolerate crew badgering (the passenger just stated to an attendant that multiple United planes were landing fine in Aspen, and that suggested there was no issue in ASE) .

The flight took off almost 2 hours late and was diverted to Gran Junction and passengers were bused to Aspen - arriving 4 hours late. (We were told about Gran Junction ahead of takeoff)

Upon arrival someone explained that ASE was undergoing some upgrades and the AA crew was not qualified to land in Aspen without the additional navigational tool that was being upgraded (but apparently United and Delta flights had no issues)

The next day - same thing happened - Gran Junction diversion. Flights from
ASE to LAX and DFW have been cancelled on August 4, 5 (and on August 6 I got a call my return ASE-LAX was also cancelled). United had multiple flights operating to LAX, Denver and other places.

Anyone knows what is unique to AA's inability to land at ASE for several days?
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Old Aug 7, 15, 10:06 am
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There is an issue with some navigational aids (localizers) at ASE affecting AA flights. Expected to be back in action today, I believe.
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Old Aug 7, 15, 1:34 pm
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Thanks for the information. Why would they only affect AA?
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Old Aug 7, 15, 2:06 pm
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Originally Posted by traveler18 View Post
Thanks for the information. Why would they only affect AA?
At ASE, AA and UA use different localizers so this outage only affected AA. Also did not affect private flights. I can't say much more than that because I don't know too much about these so called localizers other than the good people I know from the greater ASE valley were very excited about the relatively recent localizer installations/upgrades.
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Old Aug 7, 15, 6:09 pm
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Originally Posted by 869 View Post
At ASE, AA and UA use different localizers so this outage only affected AA. Also did not affect private flights.
with all due respect, this is nonsense.

A localizer antenna is part of an instrument approach to a runway, and any airplane equipped with an ILS receiver (which includes all commercial airlines) could use it.

possibly, the crews require special certification to fly the visual approach to ASE, which this crew did not have.
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Old Aug 7, 15, 6:48 pm
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Originally Posted by nachosdelux View Post
with all due respect, this is nonsense.

A localizer antenna is part of an instrument approach to a runway, and any airplane equipped with an ILS receiver (which includes all commercial airlines) could use it.

possibly, the crews require special certification to fly the visual approach to ASE, which this crew did not have.
Yes. ASE has special training requirments...

Ask over at pprune....

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Old Aug 7, 15, 7:58 pm
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Iirc, ASE has training requirements and has used MLS, not ILS. Changes at this location would likely require training or airline regs allowing unaided VFR flying. But, as the article linked to by UAPremierGuy below:

...The flights, operated by Envoy Air, were diverted because one of the airport’s localizers was broken. Localizers are navigational aids that help direct planes on their approach to the runway.

Last edited by JDiver; Aug 8, 15 at 2:17 pm Reason: ... last but
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Old Aug 8, 15, 11:03 am
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Sounds like the pilot lied about it being an equipment problem instead of a crew training/qualification issue and then became defensive about it.
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Old Aug 8, 15, 11:36 am
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It's unfortunate that Envoy is so poorly managed that the pilots weren't trained ahead of time.
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Old Aug 8, 15, 11:42 am
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See this article in the Aspen Times for more:

http://www.aspentimes.com/news/17611...-aspen-service
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Old Aug 8, 15, 12:26 pm
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I claimed a refund for the unused return flight, a change fee and fare difference into a flight they cancelled. They are "reviewing" but responded in writing that the outbound diversion and the cancellation were due to weather (not due to untrained crews or localizer issues, as it is clearly the case. Also, the ASE-LAX flight on Saturday 8/8/15 was cancelled as well.
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Old Aug 8, 15, 1:19 pm
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Originally Posted by nachosdelux View Post
with all due respect, this is nonsense.

A localizer antenna is part of an instrument approach to a runway, and any airplane equipped with an ILS receiver (which includes all commercial airlines) could use it.
Thanks for the post. I'll be sure to take it up with the airport director who made the statement next time I stop by ASE.
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Old Aug 10, 15, 6:44 am
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Another pAAthetic experience.....when will this company wake up?
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Old Aug 10, 15, 7:46 am
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Inconvenience? Yes.
Are Envoy pilots trained to fly VFR approaches? Yes.
Do Envoy's approved procedures allow pilots to fly VFR approaches into mountainous airports when the pilots have not recently completed absent certain visibility requirements? Apparently not.

Sounds to me like Envoy's procedures are more safety sensitive than UA's. Maybe that's a good thing.
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Old Aug 10, 15, 11:21 am
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Originally Posted by 869 View Post
Thanks for the post. I'll be sure to take it up with the airport director who made the statement next time I stop by ASE.
Please do. Because I agree that it doesn't make sense.. I see
RADAR BCN LCTD LAT 39-13-53.049N LONG 106-52-59.647W.
PRIMARY RADAR NOT AVBL. RADAR TFC ADVISORIES & SVCS AVBL FOR TRANSPONDER EQUIPPED ACFT ONLY.
!FDC 5/5601 ASE SID ASPEN-PITKIN CO/SARDY FIELD, ASPEN, CO.
LINDZ EIGHT DEPARTURE...
GRAND JUNCTION TRANSITION: NA EXCEPT FOR AIRCRAFT EQUIPPED WITH SUITABLE RNAV SYSTEM
WITH GPS, JNC VOR/DME OUT OF SERVICE. 1506091446-1506161446EST
RNAV

VOR/DME


I don't see "AA use only" or "UA use only" labels on any of the navaids. I do see that services are available/out of order for aircraft equipped a certain way, requiring different training.
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