Flight Service Bureau

Hey. We are FSB. We monitor the world’s airspace and airports for International Flight Operations changes that affect pilots, dispatchers, and aircraft operators. We publish a weekly Operations Bulletin to 40,000 readers. We produce charts, guides, an Airports database,  and Country lowdowns. We keep SafeAirspace.net updated with Overflight Risk information. We manage OpsGroup, a community of 4000+ International Ops specialists. You should join. You can reach us at team@fsbureau.org.

Latest News

US updates its Syria airspace warning

Following the US, UK and French airstrikes on Syria on April 14, the US FAA say there is now a risk posed to civil aviation within 200 nautical miles of the country due to increased military activity, GPS and comms interference, and the potential for more long range surface-to-air missiles in the area. In the […]

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Russia is not closing its airspace to American flights

On April 17, the Russian Ministry of Transport extended overflight approvals for US airlines through to October 28, 2018 – just hours before the old agreement on overflights was due to expire. This should bring an end to the rumour that had been circulating all week that Russia has closed its airspace to US aircraft, and […]

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ICAO Raises Weight Threshold for Hardened Cockpit Door Requirement

In Short: Following a three-year effort from industry groups and aircraft manufacturers, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) will raise the weight threshold for requiring hardened cockpit doors for aircraft with 19 or fewer passenger seats from 45.5 metric tons (100,310 pounds) maximum certificated takeoff weight to 54.5 metric tons (120,152 pounds). This decision will enable […]

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European air traffic warned over Syria strikes

EASA are warning of possible air strikes into Syria being launched from locations within the LCCC/Nicosia FIR over the next 72 hours (Apr 11-14). Eurocontrol have published a ‘Rapid Alert Notification’ on their website, with a statement from EASA that reads: “Due to the possible launch of air strikes into Syria with air-to-ground and / […]

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Qatar airspace update – military jets intercepting civil flights

In short: The situation is volatile and constantly changing, even by the hour. Military interception has been reported so the best advice is to be vigilant with sticking to assigned routes for all operations around the region. The airspace blockade of Qatar has been ongoing since June 2017 with little end in sight. But over the […]

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Ongoing Bali volcanic threat – update

In Short: Continued vigilance required for operations to Bali; The alert level for Mt Agung eruption remains at 3 (on a scale of 1-4). Last ash plume on 26 March rose to at least an altitude of 11,650 ft. When Mount Agung erupted in November 2017, airlines faced travel chaos as flights were cancelled due […]

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Maldives – Civil Unrest Update

In short: Civil unrest has calmed and state of emergency lifted on March 22, 2018. No impact at Malé International Airport or outlying islands or resorts. #OpsNormal. The Maldives, a country known far more as a honeymoon hotspot in the Indian Ocean than as a hub of political crisis, is back to “business as usual,” according […]

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LFMM/Marseille weekend ATC strike 7-9 Apr

Another ATC strike has been announced, this time just for the LFMM/Marseille ACC, spanning the entire weekend from 0430z on April 7 to 0430z on April 9. Key points: – It’s just the the controllers of the LFMM/Marseille ACC en-route airspace above FL145 who are on strike. – They expect a lot of controllers will […]

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Here’s what happens when Europe’s slot system crashes

On 3rd April 2018, a failure with the central European slot computer plunged the entire ATC system into crisis mode, with multiple knock on effects. Here’s what happened: 1. The system that allocates ATC slots to flights, and therefore manages the flow of traffic across Europe, failed at 1026 UTC. It’s called the ETFMS (Enhanced […]

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Expect breathalyzer during German Ramp checks

German authorities confirm they have been conducting random breathalyzer tests during ramp checks since as far back as Jan 2017, despite this not being part of the official EU SAFA ramp inspection guidelines. In Dec 2016, following the accident of the Germanwings Flight 9525, EASA published a proposal to the European Commission to better support pilot […]

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Singapore Changi (WSSS) Departure Clearance by Datalink

Starting April 23rd, 2018, Changi Airport (WSSS) will begin giving departure clearance (DCL) via datalink, on certain routes. The idea is to clear up voice communications when DCL can be used. Full details listed in CAAS AIP SUP 013/2018. To use this, you’ll need ACARS, and be compliant with EUROCAE ED85-A. You’ll login to the ground […]

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L888 – The Silk Road Airway

We received this interesting question from one of our Opsgroup members this week: “FSB said: ZSZZ/China There are four airways over the Himalayas (L888, Y1, Y2, Y3) which the Chinese authorities will only let you use if you have ADS, CPDLC and satellite voice communication, and operators need to verify their equipment with them at least […]

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FSB and OPSGROUP win bid to control 1.8 million km area of Pacific Airspace

Clipperton Oceanic starts operations today, and is the worlds newest piece of airspace. This one is different though – the users are in charge. Flight Service Bureau, together with OpsGroup, takes official control today of the Clipperton Flight Information Region (FIR) in the South Pacific, a 1.8 million square kilometre chunk of airspace west of […]

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New route requirements for Iceland

There are some new route requirements for eastbound departures from BIKF/Keflavik and BIRK/Reykjavik. Two new waypoints, PODAR and RAPAX are being introduced from Mar 29 onwards. Below is the updated version of Iceland AIP ENR 1.8.4.1.3.7 which explains exactly how you should file your flight plans to/from both BIKF and BIRK, and the new routes are […]

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New rules for charter flights to Greece

On Mar 23, the Greek CAA introduced a new rule requiring charter flights on non EU-registered aircraft with up to 19 seats to apply for an annual TCO license before operating to Greece. This is in addition to having to obtain the standard landing permit, as well as the TCO approval from EASA. So far, […]

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Fixing Notams – we’re on it. Help us.

OK. We’re done writing articles about it, and making goat jokes – we’ve moved the “Fixing Notams” job to the top of our list.. OpsGroup is all about information – getting the essential risks and changes that flight ops personnel need to know about into their hands without delay. Our group agrees – plenty of colourful […]

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