Arizona Pilots Deal With New UAV TFR

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The FAA has established a Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) to accommodate unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) flights by the U.S. Customs Border Patrol near Nogales, Ariz., along the Mexican border. "The unexpected, immediate implementation of this TFR raises concerns that the FAA and the Department of Homeland Security have not taken into consideration the impact that this kind of TFR has on general aviation," said Melissa Rudinger, AOPA vice president of regulatory affairs. "The association staff is meeting this week with the FAA, Homeland Security, and other security officials to take up the issue. ... The implications of this TFR are alarming." The FAA is expected to issue more TFRs this month, extending the Nogales TFR into New Mexico. "This recent action underscores why general aviation cannot ignore UAVs. ... It's unacceptable for the FAA to cordon off large areas of civilian airspace in order to protect UAVs that can't avoid other aircraft," Rudinger said. A 15-nautical-mile-wide TFR along the U.S. southern border, for example, would affect more than 100 airports and nearly 750,000 annual GA flights, AOPA said.