Here is a useful Graphic PDF for UK ‘Listening Squawks’ to print, cut and keep on your kneeboard – courtesy Flyer Magazine. Instructions on Listening Squawk use are on page 2. The current list of listening squawks around the UK is (always with Mode C/ALT when you have it):
(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.
There are new easy read pictorial airspace guides for pilots in the vicinity of either Liverpool or Doncaster, giving good advice for pilots in those areas outside the controlled airspace, as well as suggested routings for any requested VFR crossings. (The guides already on the links page of this site should they disappear from ‘Hot News’). Each launches a web page summary with pictures, and offer a pdf print to take with you. Click Here for Liverpool & Click here for Doncaster
The current VORs in the UK infrastructure is under review, no longer in use by airlines except for emergency fall-back procedures. The current 46 VORs may be progressively reduced to 19 (newly equipped) VORs over the next few years as each comes up for renewal, al lexisting ones having already exceeded their operational lives. This strategy was presented to the aviation organisations in 2008 via NATMAC and accepted. Any DMEs associated with VORs will remain, and the current positions of any removed VORs will be marked with waypoints or IFR reporting points to aid GNSS training and navigation.
FlyOnTrack will keep VOR news up to date, including known dates of VOR renewal or withdrawal.
Withdrawn: Cranfield, Newcastle
Planned Next Withdrawal: Dean Cross (December 2014)
Next Under Review/Impact Assessment for Withdrawal dates: Machrihanish, Turnberry, Glasgow, Perth, Benbecula and Inverness
The Autumn/Winter Clued Up Magazine, available online here, contains good advice on Human Factors and avoiding Controlled Flight into Terrain, and also the details of the VOR Replacement Programme (page 26).
Class F is no longer with us in the UK, and part of the Scottish FIR has been reclassified as Class E with TMZs. Two posters are available giving informaation:
NEW CLASS E AIRSPACE & TMZ’s (Colour)
NEW CLASS E AIRSPACE & TMZ’s (black and white)
An infringement avoidance tutorial is now available, all pilots are recommended to try it out.
Pilots planning and maintaining cockpit equipment need to be aware that:
The CAA’s Clued Up magazine, including article on preflight planning, licensing advice and many safety topics for the private pilot are available online, but they are large downloads if that matters to you: Summer 2013 or Autumn/Winter 2013-14.
Farnborough have a new LARS guide for 2014, well worth reading – remember that their LARS a massive area all round London, North beyond Duxford, almost to Lashenden in the East, Beachy Head in the South, and nearly to Membury in the West. It also covers advice for the Stansted TMZ. It will be on the links page when it drops from Hot News. See 2014 LARS from Farnbrough Guide – Remember if passing through the Farnborough West region (See guide), Farnborough West’s trial with a monitoring code or ‘listening squawk’ (4572 / 125.250 MHz) was successful, and the arrangement is now permanent.
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 (no permanent direct link exists)
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.
The CAA list of successful prosecutions 2012 is now published here confirming that very few infringements reach court, the authorities are very open to agreeing solutions (eg: some Nav retraining) before it reaches that stage, if the case merits it.
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.
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.)
City Airport (Barton) and Mainair Flying School have been awarded a NATS Infringement Prevention Award – they are situated very close to Manchester airspace and the Low Level Route. One of the things they have done, relevant to anyone flying anywhere near Controlled Airspace is a video about a not-uncommon event – following the wrong line feature. See Barton Infringement Award and Video
Tayside Aviation Following the local poster initiative from Sleap, Tayside Aviation have produced softcloth ipad/GPS screen wipes for their pilots which detail local airspace on one side and tips from FlyOnTrack on the other. See Screenwipes from Tayside Aviation
Please let us know any similar initiatives
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.
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): vfr.airspacesafety.com
Hot News Alerts – flyontrack on twitter
GASCo is a charitable body whose object is to foster the development of General Aviation in the UK along safe lines. Visit the GASCo site.