Friday (5/31/02) National Airspace System Update #2
Airspace issues are heating up. We currently have two field airspace coordinators in place to support the Southwest and Florida. Meg Gallagher is staffing the airspace desk at FICC for the Florida Dept of Forestry and Neal Wurschmidt is helping out the Southwest GACC in coordinating their airspace issues.
Congrats are in order to Sheri Ashenfelt (NIFC External Affairs). Sheri was editing the final updates of the airspace guide when she went into labor early and had a wonderful baby girl. I have returned to Portland and am presently working with R-6 staff and hope to have the final product ready soon!!!
Busy wildfire season means pilots need to take extra care Be alert for flight restrictions, other hazards
May 29 - Firefighters in the southwestern United States have had their hands full over Memorial Day weekend with several very large wildfires, and ongoing drought conditions in much of the West and parts of the East could mean a very bad fire season. For pilots, that means extra caution is due whenever flying near any wildfire.
Very few brushfires grow large enough to require temporary flight restrictions, but it does happen. Like all TFRs, wildfire restrictions are issued by notam and are available both from DUATS and flight service stations. In addition, the U.S. Forest Service often posts graphical representations of the TFRs. As always, though, the only official record of a TFR is the notam, and the Forest Service site should be used for information only, not for navigation.
Pilots who spot any wildfire should, first and foremost, stay away. Contact the nearest ATC or FSS facility to report the location of the fire (preferably including a VOR radial and DME distance).
Besides the obvious danger of collision with air tankers and air attack aircraft over a major fire, other dangers include reduced visibility due to smoke and haze, strong downdrafts due to smoke columns and convective build-up, and high density altitudes and possible temperature inversions.
AOPA provides graphical depictions of national security TFRs Memorial Day weekend trips may require extra careful planning
May 24 - The long holiday weekend is here, and many pilots are planning to take to the skies. But this Memorial Day weekend is much different than last year's, with nearly two dozen longstanding temporary flight restriction (TFR) areas scattered across the country for national security reasons.
In an effort to help pilots steer clear of those areas, AOPA has created graphical depictions of the 21 national security TFRs (look for "see graphic" at the end of the particular notams). These graphical TFRs are for information only and should not be used for navigation.
In addition to the 21 TFRs depicted, the "blanket" TFR restricting flight over professional or collegiate sporting events or major outdoor gatherings remains in effect. Pilots must remain at least 3 nm away from and more than 3,000 feet above any such event or gathering.
There is also a nationwide advisory for aircraft to remain away from nuclear power plants, water supplies, and other such assets. Pilots who do fly over such a facility should not loiter.
As always, pilots should request the most recent notams for these and any other flight restrictions during their preflight briefings.
I have been working with Larry Mahaffey (IAMS coordinator for BLM) and they are planning to update IAMS to depict the location of nuclear power plants. There is a pretty comprehensive list of nuclear power plant lats/longs in Chapter 5 - Avoidance Locations located on the back page of your FLIP AP/1B. It's a PDF file so I can't copy the list and send it to you.
That's all for now - Thanks to all those who make our airspace safer to fly in.....
Julie J. Stewart
National Airspace Program Manager - USFS
Regional Airspace Coordinator - USFS/BLM Pacific NW Region
Wk phone: 503-808-6728/Cell Phone: 503-780-0097 www.fs.fed.us/r6/fire/aviation/airspace