Warning Area SUA

If anyone could possibly help me with a question it would be great.

I’m looking for what makes a Warning Area a VFR environment even in what would be classified as class A airspace. If anyone knows where I can find this rule thank you.

AIM 3−4−4. Warning Areas
A warning area is airspace of defined dimensions, extending from three nautical miles outward from the coast of the U.S., that contains activity that may be hazardous to nonparticipating aircraft. The purpose of such warning areas is to warn nonparticipating pilots of the potential danger. A warning area may be located over domestic or international waters or both.

So Class A airspace is an airway below FL195 - in the UK. This means that the airways take precedence over any other traffic as GAT (General Air Traffic) rules the skies through the CAA (Civil Aviation Authority).

These air routes go around Danger Areas, Military Training Areas and any other airspace that could be a threat to GAT.

Subsequently, these warning areas will not have Class A airspace in them as Class A airways are Transponder Mandatory Zones so GAT cannot enter them. Class A could go over the airspace, making it look like you can fly VFR within an air route but they’re actually beneath it so the vertical limits need to be defined.

The Warning area in question is SFC-600 and is transponder mandatory since the US ADIZ runs through it.

I’m asking all this because an aircraft should be able to return to base VFR above 180 as long as they exit the warning area below 180 but I’ve had instructors say I’m not allowed to.

What airspace is it? I will have a look at a chart and see what I can make of it for you bud.

If the area itself is a TMZ then I am interested in checking it out, as below FL195 (UK) we enter Class G which obviously isnt a TMZ. When we book an area, the area then effectively becomes Class G to its lateral and vertical limits meaning that we can transit aircraft through on the relevant M3 VFR so long as they are below 195 when they exit and squawking 7000. It isn’t even mandatory that they receive a radar service.

I have just come across this that provides some good information:


I’m not sure if this clarifies or muddies the waters, but sections 99.11 and 99.17 may be of some use:


This SUA ,W-155, is off the coast since it’s a warning area in the US, so it doesn’t lie in the regular class A which ends 12NM off the coast of the US. It is located in the Gulf Low and Gulf High airspace’s as defined in FAA 7400.11C.

Guys can fly through my airspace VFR and there’s nothing I can do but give traffic advisories and possibly answer when Air Defense Huntress calls. I’ve found the Navy directive for that but it doesn’t describe the airspace as VFR in that same book.

I’m starting to come to the conclusion that because it doesn’t restrict VFR it makes the whole airspace a VFR environment.

Thanks that’s the reason we kick people out if their transponder isn’t working.

I have come to the conclusion that since a warning area isn’t class A airspace, VFR operations are not prohibited above FL180. Therefore the air combat maneuvers conducted in such airspace make sense to be VFR operations and SOP is to clear the aircraft to maintain VFR no matter the altitude.

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