War Plans Prompt More Restrictions

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New York Gets ADIZ, More TFRs Added...

Well, we knew something was coming and compared to some of the scenarios speculated in the days before President Bush made his Monday-night speech, the flight restrictions imposed on GA are relatively mild. "There were reports that we were going to impose ADIZs on any airport with Class B airspace," said the FAA's William Shumann. As it turns out, with NOTAMs posted Tuesday, New York gets an ADIZ, Washington ADIZ regulations go back to "orange" alert levels, TFRs have been imposed on Disney theme parks in California and Florida, and there will be nothing in the air (barring medevac and law enforcement aircraft) over major sporting events and festivals. The New York ADIZ is defined by the Mode C veils that radiates 30 nautical miles from Kennedy, La Guardia and Newark Airports. It affects 28 public-use fields including some of the busiest in the country. Among them are Essex County (CDW), Central Jersey Regional (47N), Flushing (FLU), Republic (FRG), Westchester County (HPN) and Morristown (MMU). AOPA has compiled a full list. As in Washington, aircraft entering the New York ADIZ must contact ATC and obtain a discrete transponder code. Before takeoff from anywhere inside the ADIZ, ATC contact and the transponder code must be established. The code must be squawked at all times when flying within the ADIZ and a pilot leaving the zone must get a new code before returning. A flight plan is a must for all operations within the ADIZ. Ultralight owners are reminded that the rules apply to them, too.

...Familiar Drill For D.C.-Area Pilots...

After a brief respite of "orange light" security precautions, Washington-area pilots are back to the regime of a couple of weeks ago. Whereas the New York ADIZ is defined on any sectional showing the Mode C veil, the Washington ADIZ has some irregularities and anyone unfamiliar with the boundaries should make sure they're clear before making a flight to that area. The flight-plan requirements were relaxed in Washington for a couple of weeks, but they're back. Also back is the requirement for pilots using the DC-3 (College Park, Hyde Field and Potomac Airfield) to stop at security gateway airport. The designated gateway airport is Tipton Airport in Ft. Meade, Md. Vacationers and sports fans may notice it's a little quieter in the skies. TFRs have been imposed on Disney World in Florida and Disneyland in California. Aircraft cannot operate within 3 nautical miles or 3,000 feet of the theme parks unless authorized by ATC for "operational or safety purposes." The TFR also exempts aircraft arriving or departing from an airport using standard air traffic procedures. Waivers can be obtained for security and operational purposes within the TFRs and for transporting of officials. Applications are available online or by calling 571-227-1322. All waivers have been suspended for non-emergency and security flights at major sporting events. There have also been reports that GPS signals might be degraded to 100-meter accuracy when the war starts, but the FAA's Shumann said the FAA has not been notified that the Defense Department is planning that.

...FAA Information Network Geared Up...

So, that's what it looks like today. What about tomorrow or next week? The FAA's Greg Martin assured AVweb that as soon as any changes are made or new restrictions applied, the agency will do its best to get the word out to pilots and the media. "There are systems in place," Martin said. He said the communications staff it ready to spread the word about airspace issues "anywhere, anytime, at a moment's notice." He also added that he's heard of no additions to the current list being contemplated. Best place for up-to-the-date information is the agency Web site's special NOTAM section, and pilots should check with flight service for any additions before departure. News media will be informed of any changes by e-mail and telephone conference calls. The situation has prompted some cautionary comments from AOPA's Phil Boyer. Boyer said in a news release that he's concerned about the "ADIZ creep" to New York and he hopes it doesn't continue to spread unnecessarily. "Let's make sure the security threat is real and significant before once again shackling the lives and livelihoods of American citizens." And while government officials continue to urge citizens to carry on with their lives, including traveling, the situation has altered Boyer's travel plans. He's cancelled a couple of Alaska town hall meetings March 24 and March 25 so he can stay in Washington and monitor developments.

...And Congress May Aid Industry During War

As AVweb reported last week, the airline industry claims it will be devastated by a war with Iraq. Now, it seems that some in Congress are listening to these pleas for help. Once the bombs start dropping over Iraq, Rep. John L. Mica (R-Fla.), head of the House Aviation Subcommittee, promises to help out as much as possible. "We want to try to get as many things in place as we can to help the industry as soon as possible," Mica said. "These issues aren't partisan," he added. Accompanied by Rep. Rick Larsen (D-Wash.), Mica also wants to aid the military and GA segments of the industry. Both congressmen feel the importance of a proposed $21 billion Air Force lease of 100 Boeing 767s outfitted as tankers will become obvious once the war starts. The tanker fleet "needs replacement now," Larsen said. "It's a good deal for Boeing and more importantly, a good deal for the Air Force." Mica is also concerned about vital research and development funds needed by U.S. aircraft manufacturers, as Airbus and other competitors are reportedly backed by government funding. The two claim the United States should demand more open reporting of financial records by Airbus to reveal any European government support that would violate trade agreements.