The AFTW is redrawing its popular chart depicting practice areas over the PHX area, and your comments will be used to help increase safety over airspace that both commercial jet traffic and training flights currently share. Continue reading
The ad-hoc Phoenix Airspace Users Working Group recently issued some stunning graphics showing just how congested the airspace in and around IWA in the southeastern Phoenix metropolitan area is becoming.
“Pilots operating in the airspace near IWA should be aware of the density of air traffic operations in the area,” writes Phillip D. Thornton, Air Traffic Manager, Phoenix Terminal Radar Approach Control, in a Jan. 18, 2012, Letter to Airmen. The letter becomes effective in 30 days . “Approximately 800 aircraft operations a day transit the airspace depicted above at or below 5,000’ MSL (excluding Phoenix Sky Harbor traffic).”
Download the Letter to Airmen, which contains more graphics indicating the airspace issues. (PDF, requires Adobe Reader.)
Permalink, where you can discuss this: http://aftw.org/wp/2012/01/iwaairspace/
The ATCA aerobatic training area waiver has been renewed for another two years.
The training area, on the west side of the Estrella Mountains, is displayed in the Airport Facility Directory, and has cautions on the sectional and terminal charts for intensive aerobatic activity.
The area is primarily used by the German Air Force for initial flight training that includes high performance maneuvers, spin training, and formation flying.
Frequency 128.92 should be used when in this area. The ATCA flight ops number is (623) 932-1650 for hours of operation.
Download a copy of the Airport Facility Directory description of the training area here. (588 KB PDF, requires the free Adobe Reader.)
In addition to the area being used for live fire munitions training, the airspace is increasingly being used for Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) training. The UAVs in this area are not the Predator class type aircraft you may be familiar with but various smaller models used for tactical purposes in remote theatres of operation.
As many of you know, the use of UAVs are increasing in the National Airspace System. R2310 is being scheduled much more than it has been historically in order to support this training.
There have been several events recently in which GA aircraft have encroached on the restricted area, particularly near the launch and recovery area. Recently a UAV operating within R2310 came within several hundred feet of a GA aircraft operating within the restricted area when it was NOTAMed active.
In conversation with the Army representative, it was determined that the launch and recovery area is located at the extreme southwest corner of R2310 north of Florence. Though the UAV is cleared to operate out of sight within the entire Restricted Area as NOTAMed, visual confirmation of R2310 incursions by GA aircraft where observed there. It is important to note that there is no buffer on the airspace and the UAV may operate up to its lateral and vertical limits.
Detailed .pdf and .ppt Graphics are below:
As discussed in at our last meeting. The FAA does not agree with our previously published CGZ GPS approach instructions. I received a certified letter from them today. In general this has to do with when to be on CTAF and when to be on the Practice Area frequency 122.85.
I’ve removed our recommendation at the request of the FAA. However, I have great concern on this topic. I’m concerned on what people are ACTUALLY doing. As we discussed, this area needs to be COMPLETELY evaluated for REAL world safety concerns. I’ve invited the FSDO to our next meeting, they have not yet accepted.
I’ve attached their letter here for your review and comments. I believe an open and honest conversation on this topic is warranted.