International Ops 2017

Flight Service Bureau | OPSGROUP

Category: News Item (page 1 of 8)

French ATC Strike November 2017

The ATC strike seems to be winding down. The only en-route regulations still in place are in the LFBB/Bordeaux and LFRR/Brest sectors in the West. At the airports, some delays of around 30-40 minutes are expected between 17-19z, but generally the situation seems to be stable.

Impact

Here’s the situation for en-route traffic across the various sectors:

LFBB/Bordeaux: Whole airspace regulated with moderate to high delays.

LFRR/Brest: Whole airspace regulated with moderate to high delays.

LFEE/Reims: No regulations for en-route traffic, but expect delays at both the LFSB/Basel and LFST/Strasbourg TMA’s.

LFFF/Paris: No regulations for en-route traffic, but arrivals are currently being regulated at LFPO/Paris Orly.

LFMM/Marseille: No regulations.

For real-time updates of any airspace issues, keep an eye on this handy French ATC webpage: http://dsnado.canalblog.com/

Reroutes

TANGO Routes
Low delays on T9 and T213 – these are available for suitably equipped aircraft. Read “The Three Sisters” for more info on those. For oceanic clearance on Tango routes during the strike, you need to make sure you request your oceanic clearance 45 minutes before entry to the ocean.

Re-routes through Algeria
If you want to avoid French airspace by flying through DAAA/Algeria instead, you can do so – and until the end of the strike, you won’t have to get an overflight permit. Just make sure you send a new FPL (plus any subsequent DLA messages) to DAAAZQZX and DTTCZQZX addresses, as they will not have received the original FPL.

Depending on where you’re flying to/from, here’s what you need to do:

1. All traffic overflying DAAA/Algeria airspace with destination within the LECB/Barcelona FIR must file via point LUXUR at FL300 or above, and at only EVEN flight levels.Traffic dest LEPA/Palma via LUXUR should FPL UM134-LUXUR-GENIO-UN859-OSGAL with STAR OSGAL.

2. All traffic departing from the LECB/Barcelona FIR and overflying DAAA/Algeria must file via point SADAF at FL310 or above, and at only ODD flight levels.

3. All traffic departing from LEPA/Palma to any airport in DAAA/Algeria must file max FL290 over point SADAF. Departures from LEPA/Palma must also file SID MEBUT: MEBUT-NINES-UM134-OLMIR-UN861-SADAF at FL290.

4. Entering GMMM/Morocco via DTTC/Tunisia and DAAA/Algeria:

  • Route: DOPEL UM126 KAWKA UG14 CSO UA31 CHE shall be used. DAAA/Algeria ATC will tactically approve direct routing to ALR where possible.
  • Route: DOPEL DCT LUXUR SADAF CHE cannot be planned.

5. Entering DAAA/Algeria and DTTC/Tunisia then LIRR/Italy from GMMM/Morocco:

  • Route: CHE UA31 CSO UG14 KAWKA UM126 DOPEL shall be used. DAAA/Algeria ATC will tactically approve direct routing from ALR where possible.
  • Route: Traffic between DAAA/Algeria and DTTC/Tunisia via SADAF-KAWKA at FL300 and above (only even flight levels).

Re-routes through Tunisia
Tunisia also let operators fly through their airspace when there’s a French ATC strike on, without having to get a permit. Just make sure you copy your FPL (plus any subsequent DLA messages) to DTTCZQZX and DTTCZRZX.

Even when there’s no strike going on, there are a bunch of routes you can use through DTTC/Tunisia airspace that do not require overflight permission. These are:

a) Traffic between DTTC/Tunisia and DAAA/Algeria via DOPEL-LUXUR at FL310 and above (only ‘odd’ flight levels)

b) Traffic between DAAA/Algeria and DTTC/Tunisia via SADAF-KAWKA-DOPEL at FL300 and above (only ‘even’ flight levels)

During the strike, they also open up routes connecting LMMM/Malta with DAAA/Algeria, for flights from Europe to Africa and South America. For that, you should file FPL using following routes:

  • Route: PAN – BIRSA – ELO (after ELO traffic can fly DCT GHA) at FL195-465 to be filed for traffic destination West Africa and South America, or
  • Route: PAN – RALAK – EBA at FL195-465 to be filed for traffic destination South/South West of Africa.

 

CYYR/Goose Bay closed – sticky runways

CYYR/Goose Bay was closed by the Canadian Department of National Defence on Nov 8, following the discovery of a problem with their runways. During snow removal operations over the past few days, crack sealant was found on vehicles after they were used on the runways. Specialists are en-route to Goose Bay to assess the situation.

Runway 08/26 has been completely closed, and Runway 16/34 has closed to all except Medevac flights, with a shortened Landing Distance Available of 7600 feet.

The Airport has said that emergency flights will be considered on a “case by case basis”. However, for now, carrying CYYR as an ETOPS alternate does not make sense.

Current Notams show the airport closure has been extended until 2359Z today, Nov 9, though that may still be extended further.

 

A5669/17 - RWY 08/26 CLSD. 08 NOV 23:16 2017 UNTIL 09 NOV 23:59 2017. CREATED: 08 NOV 23:17 2017
A5670/17 - RWY 16/34 AVBL MEDEVAC ONLY WITH:  
FIRST 1980 FT RWY 34 CLSD. THR 34 IS RELOCATED 1980 FT.
DECLARED DIST:
RWY 34 TORA 7600 TODA 8600 ASDA 7600 LDA 7600
RWY 16 TORA 7600 TODA 7600 ASDA 7600 LDA 7600. 08 NOV 23:16 2017 UNTIL 09 NOV
23:59 2017. CREATED: 08 NOV 23:20 2017

Yet more ATC strikes in French Guiana

The seems to be no end in sight for the French Guiana ATC strike.

They’ve published yet another 4-part Notam for their SOOO/Rochambeau FIR, instructing operators exactly how to fly through their airspace – because for the next week, they won’t have any daytime FIR ATC staff on duty!

From 1100-2030z daily until 15 Nov, there’s no-one working. Nada. Zilcho.

Outside these hours, they usually manage to find enough controllers to come in to work a night-shift, although some days they don’t quite manage it and then overnight closures are announced on separate Notams too.

Basically, if you want to cross this bit of airspace, there are now very specific routes and levels you have to fly at. Once you’re inside the FIR, don’t change your speed or level. There are a couple of published routes that take you direct from the FIR boundary to SOCA/Cayenne Airport (where local tower ATC staff are still working), but the rest are just for overflying traffic. Check these carefully prior to ops, and make sure you’re at the right flight level before crossing the FIR boundary.

TTZP/Piarco ATC (who control the FIR to the north) have said that everything has been running smoothly so far with this contingency plan, and they haven’t had any problems with directing overflying traffic from TTZP to SOOO.

To read the contingency plan in full, with all the published routes and what to do, click here.

Missile attack on OERK/Riyadh was “warning shot”, other airports now targets

A Yemeni Army spokesman has said that last Saturdays missile attack on OERK was a “warning shot”.

The missile was launched from rebel territory in Yemen, specifically targeting OERK/Riyadh King Khalid airport. Although most mainstream media carried the “missile was intercepted” story, we’re not sure that this is the case – even if it was, parts of it did fall on airport property and there was a visible explosion.

The spokesman said “the missile that targeted King Khalid airport was a warning shot and we warn all companies to prevent landing of their planes in the UAE and Saudi Arabia airports”.

Given that the Yemeni rebels have demonstrated their capability of reaching their target, there is some credibility to the threat.

Operators should consider this in operations to OE** and OM** airports.

At present, there is no indication of increased threat to overflight of Saudi or UAE airspace.

On Monday, the Saudi Arabia coalition closed all air, sea and land borders with Yemen after the missile strike on Riyadh on Nov 4, effectively closing all airports in Yemen. Yemenia airlines said that the coalition, which controls Yemen’s airspace, had declined it permission to fly out of Aden and Seiyun, the only two remaining functioning airports. OYSN/Sanaa has been closed since August 2016.

Also, all UN humanitarian flights to Yemen, one of the few international operators, have been cancelled after flights were no longer given clearance from the Saudi-led coalition to land in the country.

SCATANA remains active in the southwestern portion of the Jeddah FIR, no new Notams have been issued in relation to the last few days.

For further:

  • Monitor Saudi Arabia page on SafeAirspace
  • Monitor OPSGROUP member updates
  • Talk to us at team@fsbureau.org

 

ENSB: No more direct flights, emergency diverts still OK

This is now officially a domestic airport – international arrivals are no longer permitted.

We asked the Norwegian CAA the million-dollar question: can ENSB still be used as an ETOPS or emergency enroute alternate?

Their response: “ENSB now being a domestic airport, it shall not be used as an alternate airport in normal flight planning, but in case of emergency, medical – or flight safety related, the airport may be used.”

In other words, if you are planning a Polar flight and want to use ENSB as an ETOPS or emergency enroute alternate, you can. 

We also spoke with the ATC tower at the airport: they confirmed that you can still use ENSB as an emergency divert, and they have someone there on duty H24. The normal RFF category is 8.

So why has the airport been downgraded from international to domestic?

It seems it has something to do with the authorities desire to limit the amount of charter fights operating directly to Svalbard. Now, if you want to go there you will first have to go to one of Norway’s international airports to clear customs, and then continue on to Svalbard as a domestic flight. The Norwegian CAA say direct international charter flights may still be allowed “in the interests of tourism”, but it seems this will be the exception rather than the rule.

Interestingly, you can still fly to ENSB direct from Russia, as they have a separate agreement from 1974 regarding the use of  the airport – which is unaffected by this new rule.

Even more interesting is that when you get to Svalbard, if you decide to leave the main town of Longyearbyen, it is a legal requirement to carry a gun, and to know how to use it – they’re not joking about those polar bears.

Iraq ATC strike – update

At 0800 local this morning, Iraqi controllers returned to work. For the last few days, Iraqi ATC had been on strike for better pay, effectively closing the Baghdad FIR and intermittently Baghdad and Basra airports. An 80nm in trail requirement has been removed. Military controllers, pictured above, who had been running ORBI/Baghdad Airport have completed their duties.

Local ATC controllers tell us that the strike is over – they are running what they call ‘ops normal’ for two weeks, before they will/may strike again as negotiations continue. Inside word is that a number of local controllers have been fired, and Serco were providing most of the staff to cover the centre. Baghdad FIR Control Centre and Iraqi Airports are running normally – for now.

We are still expecting the FAA to remove the restriction for US operators using the Baghdad FIR, this is a separate issue. No further news on that just yet.

New, single CPDLC logon for US airspace

In case you missed the several hundred Notams this week, KUSA is the new identifier for all datalink logons in the US, including CPDLC-DCL, and enroute, which came into use on October 22nd. Now, the only logon you need is KUSA.

For all you could possibly want to know about Datalink operations in the US, take a peek at the new AC90-117, ” an overview of data link communication operations for U.S. domestic
operations and in oceanic and remote continental airspace”, which we’ve uploaded here.

More readable is the FAA’s CPDLC-DCL guide, uploaded here.

There are some comments that it doesn’t work properly if you don’t have an active FPL in the box, let us know your experiences on that in the comment section below.

 

Storm: Central America landfall of Selma on Saturday

Tropical Storm Selma is heading for Central America, landfall El Salvador coast on Saturday, current winds 35G45 kts.

Monitor:

  • http://www.usno.navy.mil/JTWC/
  • https://www.cyclocane.com/

National Italian ATC Strike (cancelled)

Update: 1800Z / 24October

Good news–the strike scheduled for October 27th has been cancelled, no disruptions in ATC services to be expected.  All FIRs have issued NOTAMs accordingly.

Italy ATC Unions have announced a strike on October 27th, which is a Friday (big surprise there). As of now, the strike is expected to take place from 1100-1500UTC.

Negotiations are ongoing, and we have our contacts in Italy keeping us updated to any developments and impact to operations.

ENAV has confirmed the strike could affect:

Milano, Roma, and Brindisi ACCs, ATS and MET at a large chunk of Italian airports, the flight planning data office, ground communications, weather forecasting units…it’s a large strike.

 

 

Read up on the full NOTAM below, and we’ll get the updates here when they’re posted.

 

DUE TO STRIKE OF PART OF OPERATIONAL PERSONNEL FOLLOWING AIR NAVIGATION SERVICES MAY BE AFFECTED:
1) LIBB, LIMM, LIPP AND LIRR ACC/FIC
2) ATS AND MET OBS PROVIDED BY ENAV, AT:
LIBD LIBF LIBG LIBP LIBR
LIEE LIEO LIMA LIMC LIME
LIPH LIPK LIPO LIPQ LIPR
LIRI LIRN LIRQ LIRU LIRZ
3) ATS/AIS/MET AND COM PROVIDED BY
- NOTAM OFFICE (NOF-AFTN LIIAYNYX)
- ATS REPORTING OFFICES WITH CENTRAL BRIEFING OFFICE CAPABILITY 
(ARO-CBO ROMA-AFTN LIRFZPZX AND ARO-CBO MILANO-AFTN LIMLZPZX) NOTAM IN FORCE
- INTERNATIONAL COMMUNICATION CENTRE (ICC-AFTN LIIDYFYX)
- CENTRALIZED AUTOMATED FLIGHT PLANNING DATA OFFICE (AODO-AFTN LIIRZEZX)
- GROUND GROUND COMMUNICATION MONITORING UNIT (CME)
4) METEOROLOGICAL FORECASTING UNITS (UPM ROMA-AFTN LIJRYMYX AND UPM MILANO-AFTN LIJLYMYX).
REMARKS:
A) ACCORDING TO ITALIAN LAW 146/90 AND 83/2000 THE PROVISION OF ATS WILL BE GRANTED TO:
- STATE/HEAD/FFR/MEDEVAC/HOSP/HUM/SAR/ATFMX AND EMERGENCY FLIGHT
- OVERFLYING FLT AND STATE AIRCRAFT
- INCOMING INTERCONTINENTAL FLT
- FLT TO/FM ITALIAN ISLANDS AND DEP INTERCONTINENTAL AS IDENTIFIED BY CIVIL AVIATION AUTHORITY
- ALL OTHER FLT SPECIFICALLY AUTHORIZED BY CIVIL AVIATION AUTHORITY 
B) DURING STRIKE ATS/AIS/MET MAY BE PROVIDED TO ADDITIONAL FLT ACCORDING TO RELEVANT 
FLOW CONTROL MEASURES FOR LIBB LIMM LIPP LIRR ACC ISSUED IN DUE TIME BY EUROCONTROL DNM (DIRECTORATE NETWORK MANAGER)
C) AVAILABILITY OF AIR NAVIGATION SERVICES PROVIDED BY ATS/AIS /MET/COM 
UNITS WILL BE ANNOUNCED BY SPECIFIC NOTAM

EGGW/London Luton to close for 27 nights

EGGW/Luton will be closed for 27 nights from 0000L to 0530L daily, starting Monday, November 6th and ending the morning of Sunday, December 3rd, 2017 for runway resurfacing.

So, late night and early morning arrivals and departures won’t be possible.

Standard operations will be practiced outside of these hours, with little to no disruption expected during daytime.

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