Cardiff have released a couple of useful PDFs for pilots around the South Wales/Bristol Channel area.
1) Two page safety advice sheet - Cardiff Safety Bulletin May 2013
2) Pictorial Guide - what you want to know about flying in and around Cardiff airspace, including pictures to illustrate locations - Cardiff VFR Guide May 2013
Contact details for the National Gliding Competition for 25/5/13 to 2/6/13 has been published and is available Lasham National and Regional Gliding Competitions
(pdf). To know where they are going each day, try: Daily Gliding Tasks
The trial of a class D triangle around Jersey allowing VFR towards the French coast (up to 2000', but not reaching Guernsey or Alderney) that was tried out in Summer 2012 has been retained right through 2013. See http://www.cicz.co.uk/
The triangle of CTA known as CI-CTA-2 (the comaratively small one due north of Cap de La Hague just below 50N, which used to have a base of 3000' with Class G below now has a base of 3500'. The transition altitude in the CTA and the CTRs is raised to 5000'
It's very rare that a prosecution for an infringement is reported in the press, but here is a link
to an infringement of the Stansted Class D, TMZ, and Luton Class D. This fortunately did not result in a collision, but still attracted a large fine due to the risk and disruption. The learning point is simple - pilots are encouraged to call D&D on 121.5 MHz (or tell the ATC service provider they are using, if any), as soon as they safely can if they are 'temporarily unsure of position' in an area of a route known to have Controlled Airspace, TMZs, Danger Areas, etc. nearby. Why prolong the worry and stress for yourself when someone is paid to help locate you?
Farnborough's trial with a monitoring code or 'listening squawk' (4572 / 125.250 MHz) extended to Sept 2013 at least. See item below for other codes
Frequency Reference Cards are available to pilots exclusively as a digital download here. The downloadable cards have replaced the traditional hard copy versions which came with aircharts.
With the sad demise of Filton (and earlier, Lyneham), Bristol have released an updated guide to their airspace and how it integrates and interfaces with the Class G and Cardiff airspace, new VRPs etc. See Bristol Airspace Guide April 2013 version
(available also in the LINKS section when this drops off 'News')
NATS announce their Infringement Prevention Award scheme (and the first winner, Stapleford Flight Centre). This is not an annual award, it is presented to deserving candidates as appropriate, and if you want to nominate someone, you can. The announcement of the scheme, nomination process, and the efforts made by first well-deserved winner is here: NATS Infringement Prevention Award
- The link to this scheme will be on the FlyOnTrack links page when it eventually drops out of 'Hot News'
Why do pilots infringe? A lot of work has been going on with analysis of data provided by pilots who have infringed NATS controlled airspace over the past couple of years. The first public release of the analysis is now available on Analysis of Pilots Surveys Release 1
. (Also available on the "Statistics" tag of this site.)
25-11-2012 Airspace Change and Temporary Restrictions:
Here's the news-sheet giving news, changes and known future planned restrictions
for the rest of the year and into 2013: Restrictions Outlook from late November 2012
. Other restrictions can and will spring up, (any listed are only the ones fully signed off 'legally' at the time this list came out), so check NOTAMs and just before flight, & don't forget, the temporary restrictions are updated daily on freephone 0500-354802
(+44 20 8750 3939 from abroad or mobiles with 'free minutes'.) If you haven't done so for a while, check out AICs too. To go directly to the AIS Index of all "Mauve" AICs (which cover Restrictions of Flying) click here
- note that if there is an AIC in the list specifically for 'Fast Jet' and/or 'Red Arrows' displays, it's always worth reading.
Here is a pdf of a graphic
to print, cut and keep on your kneeboard - it does not include the latest, which is Farnborough, see below:. The current list of listening squawks around the UK is:
- 0010 Birmingham 118.050 MHz
- 0011 Solent / Bournemouth 120.225 MHz / 119.475 MHz respectively
- 0012 Thames Radar/Gatwick 132.7 MHz / 126.825 MHz respectively
- 0013 Luton / Stansted 129.550 MHz / 120.625 MHz respectively
- 2677 Leeds Radar, 133.125 MHz <- NEW!
- 4572 East Midlands Approach 134.175 MHz <- NEW!
- 4572 Farnborough Radar (West) 125.250 MHz until Sept '13 at least <- NEW!
- 6170 Doncaster Approach 126.225 MHz
- 7045 Aldergrove Approach 128.5 MHz
- 7366 Manchester 118.575 MHz
(Yes, 4572 is used for two different units). Remember usual rules apply, you are not in receipt of a service and you must stay in Class G airspace, you cannot enter the CTA or CTR. Go back to another suitable squawk (eg: 7000-C) when you move away from the area or stop monitoring.
(link amended 18/1/2013) New amendment to CAP413 released, minor amendments, see here
Farnborough occasionally has short period (usually one hour duration) of temporary controlled airspace (CAS(T)) announced by NOTAM and on the restrictions/upgrades freephone number 0500-354802. CTR dimensions, shape, and the airway route and base levels changed fairly dramatically in 2011 - see AIC Yellow 99 of 2011
- they were Class A, they are now Class D, so VFR clearances can be negotiated with the controller. Here's a link
to the AIC 'home page', choose yellow AICs, then number 99 of 2011. (The reason there is no direct link is that the actual AIC change address when reloaded every month, the home page doesn't.)
Since 2009, Stansted has had a TMZ (Transponder Mandatory Zone) in the Class G airspace under
the stubs of the CTA. A new info sheet has been produced for flying in the Stansted Transponder Mandatory Zone - see Transponder Mandatory Zone for Stansted
A map of Farnborough LARS coverage is now available here as a pdf: Map of Farmborough LARS area
These will remain available on the LINKS page after the news item is removed.
There is a small but growing trend for airfields and nearby Airspace controllers to start extra initiatives to cut down infringements locally - by highlighting local "elephant traps". For example, I hear Wellesbourne and Birmingham have a lot of things going together (eg: radar room visits are well established) but if you fly into Wellesbourne, the new idea is to staple a 'local airspace brief' to the landing fee receipt for visitors to make sure they realise how close and low (1500') the base of the Birmingham CTA is not far to the North after departure. (Birmingham Brief to appear here shortly). Prestwick CC have produced the following poster too, highlighting a local airway to pilot departing Sleap, and the latter have it on their noticeboard for visitors and as a reminder to locals about the somewhat higher airway nearby. See: Sleap Poster
- whilst no-one is inferring either the locals or visitors to these two airfields are any worse than any other airfield in the infringements stakes, there's the possibility through these local initiatives, very relevant to specific problems nearby, that these two will be better than others in the future at avoiding infringements on flights out of their airfields.
If you airfield has a similar local initiative, it can be advertised here too - both the Birmingham 'reminder' and the Sleap poster will be on the links page here even after this news item has gone.
A new radar replay showing 15 minutes of disruption in Stansted CTR is available on the Radar Replay tag, all due to misindentification of ground features, and made more difficult for controllers by the transponder remaining 'off'. (The replay is speeded up to play through in less than 5 minutes, with annotations of where mistakes were made). See 'number 10' in the series on the Radar Replay page.
Video Clip help from NATS for visual flying around London, plus the pictorial airspace guides around the UK. There's a new resource from NATS for anyone flying visually in the London area (link updated 18/1/2013):- http://vfr.airspacesafety.com/content/
Just pick the leg or legs encircling London and up between Stansted and Luton which interest you, and you get a short video brief and see the flight itself and specific landmarks on the way. So if you were thinking of flying (say) Oxfordshire to Kent, you could link legs from Thame through to Sevenoaks via Henley and Guildford. Also
, you can click on specific airspace areas around the UK and view picture pdf guides written by local controllers who are usually pilots themselves. And don't forget the NATS endorsement of an airspace warning device - moving map CAA chart, free airspace data downloads, warnings of airspace, and 'locator' information, all for around £150. See http://www.airspaceaware.com/
Hot News Alerts - flyontrack on twitter
Faxing flightplans? The Swanwick Air Traffic Control Centre manage flightplans now. AFPEx
gives your own online filing system (registration required). Pilots who do not have an AFPEx account should fax FPL and associated messages to 01489 61 2793 ensuring that they are correctly addressed - and they must contain a fax number
too which SWanwick can use to reply to you by fax.There is a 24 hour Helpdesk for all enquiries 0845 601 0483 or 01489 612792. The Helpdesk AFTN address is EGGGYFAJ. Useful links: for AFPEx registration and use: Flight Planning Online