The configuration of Los Angeles (LAX) Class B airspace is set to change on December 22 to ensure that STAR routes are contained within the protected airspace and to “correct inefficiencies of several existing areas.” In addition, the VFR shoreline transition route with multiple altitudes will be reinstated to allow pilots “to retain flight following at all times.”
Air traffic control
As opposition continued to mount against a plan to make the Washington, D.C., air defense identification zone (ADIZ) permanent, Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta announced at the AOPA Expo that he has extended the comment period deadline from November 2 to February 6.
Effective December 8, all operators requesting a special traffic management program (STMP) reservation electronically will be required to update their registration information. In addition, a new e-STMP process of obtaining and verifying reservations will go into effect at that time. The FAA has published FDC notam 5/0872, which addresses the IFR STMP for the “ski mountain” airports.
The FAA’s proposal to modify St. Louis Class B airspace mitigates much of the effect on general aviation thanks to early input from general aviation interests. Modifications are needed to protect instrument procedures for new Runway 11/29 at Lambert-St. Louis International Airport, expected to be commissioned next April.
The FAA’s air traffic controller contract proposal maintains the average base pay of current controllers ($166,000), which the agency said is a 74-percent increase since the 1998 contract. The union is proposing to raise average total compensation for all controllers to more than $200,000 in the next four years, according to the agency.
The union representing air traffic controllers rejected the FAA’s call last month for federal mediation to help the agency reach a new labor agreement with controllers, labeling it a “publicity stunt.” A 1998 contract expired on September 30, and the FAA suggests that little progress has been made since it and the National Air Traffic Controllers Association began negotiations on July 13.
Mitsubishi MU-2, Parker, Colo., Aug. 4, 2005– The commercial pilot, the sole occupant of he airplane, was killed when MU-2 N454MA crashed on approach to Centennial Airport (APA), near Denver, at 2:06 a.m. The Flight Line cargo airplane had departed from Salt Lake City International Airport at 12:40 p.m. in night IMC.
The Helicopter Association International (HAI) has appealed to FAA Administrator Marion Blakey to further collaborate with the industry to improve communications and weather information for flight operations in the Gulf of Mexico.
More than eight months after the start of reduced vertical separation minimums (RVSM) in North America, about 70 percent of U.S.-registered business aircraft are approved for RVSM operations, and only four models have achieved 100-percent fleet compliance, according to data provided by technical consulting firm CSSI.
People tend to think of NASA’s Small Aircraft Transportation System (SATS) project as a far-fetched plan to put an airplane in every garage and turn the skies of America into tomorrow’s commuter byways. The truth is the SATS program will bring GPS-based “highway in the sky” instrument approaches with lower minimums to hundreds of smaller airports, many of them used today by business aircraft.