Empowered Pilots- Awareness Makes the Workplace Better (Tips)

The Aviation Workplace

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Good evening, ladies and gentlemen! Or… well, it may be afternoon, morning, or tea-time for some of you guys, but that’s totally besides the point here. ;)

I’ve had an intense weekend of controlling, which has been a ton of fun! However, there are a few (namely two) issues that I feel is necessary for you guys to know. For the last four days, those two issues are ones that I’ve run across rather repeatedly. For the sake of safety, smooth operations, and general well-being of others, I feel that pilots as a whole need to pay attention to what I’m about to underline.

1. Intersecting Runways- Hold Shorts

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When dealing with multiple runways intersecting each other, it is very important to understand where exactly the hold short lines are, as well as being consciously aware of the fact that you must avoid crossing any of those. Doing anything otherwise can result in disaster. Not only that, but it may result in a headache for the controller in the long run.

When an airport is in operation, it can be expected that the controller will use the runways he/she has on hand to the best of his/her ability- as a pilot, you need to focus on what the controller is trying to tell you. Intersecting runways prove to be a challenge, since one must keep track of planes that will have the possibility to cross flight paths.

When you are given permission to LUAW (line up and wait) on a runway, you cannot cross the hold short lines that bar access to an intersecting runway- to do so would enact a runway incursion, which poses a danger to incoming or departing aircraft. If that happens, then the controller may have to tell an inbound to go around, or to force someone to get off immediately to avoid that happening in the first place.

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2. Pattern Departures

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This issue tends to trip up pilots and controllers alike, so being clear on this should help. While flying patterns, if, at any point, you desire to leave the pattern, you need to let the controller know by requesting departure to the N/W/E/S. Merely asking for a frequency change will not get the point across- we won’t know what it is you’re trying to do (this is what usually gets people).

Request Departure

  1. Make yourself feel like leaving the pattern.
  2. Click on your command request screen.
  3. Locate the “request departure” line on your bar prompt.
  4. Think long and hard (I wouldn’t advise thinking for five hours on this) about which direction you intend to depart in.
  5. Click on said direction. Done!

Of course, most of us will probably have an idea that you want to leave the pattern, but we won’t know that for sure. We need “official” confirmation, if you will. So, if you want to leave, and avoid receiving a “say intentions,” then ask for departure. It’s simple and easy!

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Well, that’s about all I need to outline. Keep those things in mind, and we can make IF a better place, as cheesy as that may sound! Hope to see y’all out there in the field (literally).

-Josh

P.S- Yes, this was vetted by Tyler S.

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Awesome, great idea @StikLover2 and @Tyler_Shelton

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