SOP for reverse thrusters


Does anyone know what the Standard Operating Procedures are for reverse thrusters at the gate? I always understood that they were a "no no" when pushing back and that only tugs should be used.....However, on a recent trip starting in Oklahoma City 2 planes (mine included) used reverse thrust and no tugs to push back. One of our reverse thruster plates wouldn't lock down and we had to wait for maintenance to fix it
! Next leg out of Memphis had the plane next to me push back by the same method......Just curious if anyone knows if this is acceptable, if it varies by airline, or if it is only done with a shortage of manpower.

Thanks guys!


Varies by airline most likely.

However, in the DC-9 propoganda video that we got to watch before MD-88 groundschool, it mentioned how the DC-9 series of jets was designed to do just that.
We can do it in the 1900, but are restricted to the amount of time. I believe it is no more than 30 seconds.
I never tried that, but we did play an occasional game of "Blast the Ramper" when we'd throw them into deep beta while parking in the snow!
Flying in Alaska, I am sure I will plenty of chances to blast the ramper with snow. None of the places we park give us the reason to use reverse. Our biggest concern is picking up gravel.
At Frontier, it is allowed but everyone on the ramp is supposed to be wearing eye protection. Ive never seen it done before though in my 6 months on the ramp.

As for playing "blast the ramper" dude that stuff hurts!! Last week I was on a tug going behind a 737 that must have just pulled into its gate. Anyway the beacon was off so I crossed behind it on the service road and all of a sudden it got really windy and really hot. The tug started to go up on two wheels and I had to really hang on to the wheel. It really freaked me out and I ended up with an instant sunburn feeling on my arm and leg. After that I drove straight over to the front of the plane stood up on my tug and started yelling at the pilot because he had his engine on and no beacon. It must have been too loud out there though because he proceeded to open his window and give me the power on sign and a thumbs up? The guy probably never even realized what happened. I was pretty pissed at the time but now that I think about it, its kinda funny I suppose.

I never tried that, but we did play an occasional game of "Blast the Ramper" when we'd throw them into deep beta while parking in the snow!

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We played that same game in the Metro with a couple of cute rampers in CHO during the spring/summer when they were wearing skirts. We were easily amused! Haaa..the good olé days!