Short Final: PIC


I was piloting N7304Y, a Miller Twin Comanche (a veritable “hot rod”) from San Antonio’s Stinson Airport to Houston Hobby Airport early in the morning. Houston Center passed me to Approach and then to the final controller for Hobby.

Approach: “Say your indicated airspeed.”

04Y: “Indicating 140 knots on the dial.”

Approach: “Maintain 140.”

04Y: “Will do. Be advised I’ll have to slow to gear speed prior to final.”

Approach: “Direct Carlo—maintain 3,000.”

04Y: “Will do. Will slow to gear speed prior to Carlo.”

There was no response to this. I was slowing down and had passed Carlo when Approach called me again.

Approach: “04Y say indicated.”

04Y: “120 slowing to 110.”

Approach: “I told you to maintain 14 0.”

04Y: “Junior, there’s only one PIC on this airplane and it’s not you!”

The remainder of the approach and landing went as expected. However, when it was time to return, I spent a protracted amount of time “in the penalty box” awaiting my takeoff clearance. Whereupon, I used enough energy to qualify for a noise abatement takeoff—nearing my altitude limit of 1,500 feet prior to the end of runway.

Patrick Andrews
Neosho, MO