Originally posted by Josh:
It seems the captain is taking things too easy by not studying weather conditions and letting a junior guys to fly the plane.
On long-haul flights, Airlines carry one or more extra pilots precisely to allow for one of them to rest, so that no one falls asleep at the controls. Even 'senior' pilots have to rest!
There are many studies on the behaviour of people in high-stress situations. In hindsight, it is easy to point fingers, but that does not prevent future incidents. The only way forward is to either prevent that combination of circumstances if possible, or redesign the hardware, software, procedures or offer different training.
All pilots know what to do when large storms are expected along the flight path, so a 'junior' pilot should not need 'babying'.
Aircraft designers will no doubt sort out the pitot tube freezing over issues; independent movement of joysticks on manual control is another such issue. Even after the pitot tubes started to respond, the pilot behaved irrationally – but that can happen to people under stress. After the UA 232 disaster, 40 crews went through a simulation of the incident. All 40 crashed, but the original crew did manage to reach the airport runway. That saved 189 lives.
Consider what that means in your own Control Room. In a real emergency, with dozens of alarms going off every minute, is it possible that the CRO does the wrong thing? The stats, according to Swain & Guttman, say there is a 10% chance that will happen. That is very high indeed, even I have seen it happen in my own experience.
RCA must always aim to prevent recurrence. That does not happen with a blame culture.