International Ops 2017

Flight Service Bureau | OPSGROUP

Tag: Overflight Permit

Afghan/Pakistan border waypoint name changes

Afghanistan has changed a bunch of waypoint names on its border with Pakistan today. If you’re flying that way, you’ll need to know these for when you submit your Pakistan permit – they only approve permits for specific entry/exit points.

For more details, check out the full AIP AIRAC AMDT here.

Overflight advice for Afghanistan averages out at a minimum FL250, though as with other mountainous countries we think FL320 is a better starting point. For Pakistan, the consensus among foreign authorities is to cross the OPLR/Lahore and OPKR/Karachi FIR’s at higher flight levels. For full details check out safeairspace.net

If you want to know exactly how to get your landing or overflight permits, check out our Permit Book, which tells you how to get a permit for each and every country in the world!

Ops to Taiwan? You’ll have to avoid China

We’ve had lots of questions on this subject lately. So here’s what you need to know:

  • Foreign-registered aircraft are prohibited from operating direct between China and Taiwan.
  • You’ve got to make a tech stop somewhere between the two countries – most choose to do so in either VHHH/Hong Kong or VMMC/Macau.
  • Importantly, the same rules apply for China overflights – if you’re flying to Taiwan from any third country, you can’t overfly China. 
  • Only Chinese and Taiwanese registered aircraft are able to operate direct between China and Taiwan.

The Chinese authorities are reluctant to provide any kind of official document stating any of this – we haven’t been able to find any precise wording anywhere in their AIP which states these restrictions.

To test the theory, we applied to the Chinese authorities for a landing permit for a direct flight from Taiwan to China. After we applied, we received an immediate call from CAAC emphasising that they will not deal with such applications for foreign registered aircraft. They advised they will not process this application and verbally rejected it.

The Chinese authorities circulate an official document to Chinese handling agents about this issue, which sets out the rules quite clearly. For some reason, they don’t like these to be distributed outside of China… so naturally, we got our hands on a translated copy!

So here’s a handy chart showing exactly what you can / can’t do:

More information:

  • If you are planning any flights to China anytime soon, make sure you know about the hidden costs of operating there here.
  • If you want to know exactly how to get your landing or overflight permits, check out our Permit Book – this tells you how to get a permit for each and every country in the world!

Indonesia is intercepting aircraft – outside their airspace

If you are operating in the Singapore FIR, consider this carefully: you may be overflying Indonesia without knowing it. Indonesia will know though, and they want you to have an overflight permit.

You will find out in one of three ways:

  1. You’ll be intercepted by two Indonesian Air Force Sukhoi 27/30 Flanker jets and brought to Indonesia
  2. You’ll receive a nastygram via your National Authority
  3. You’ll get a fine

2. and 3. are not cool, but 1. is something to avoid at all costs. The inside of military/police cells at outlying Indonesian Airports is not pretty.

Watch out for the following airways – M758, M646, M767, G334, M761, G580. These all pass over Indonesian territory, even though the area is actually part of the Singapore and Malaysia FIR’s.

Indonesia has a reputation for excessively strict enforcement of permit rules. Back in 2014, a King Air plane en-route from Sarawak to Singapore was intercepted by Indonesian fighter jets in airspace managed by Singapore ATC, and was forced to land at WIOO/Pontianak Airport in Indonesia.


The reason? Because they were overflying some small Indonesian islands out in the ocean, the Indonesian Air Force claimed they were overflying Indonesia’s sovereign skies – without a permit.

Indonesia still hasn’t updated its AIP, but the rules they enforce are clear: if you’re overflying any Indonesian territory, you must get an overflight permit, regardless of the flight level.

Here’s a recent nastygram to an OpsGroup member in February 2017:


Bottom line: check your airways carefully, and make sure there are no Indonesian Island underneath. If there are, get a permit.

Sanya FIR: Do I need an overflight permit?

The 3-second answer: you don’t need a China overflight permit on airways: A1, L642, M771 and N892. You only need one if you’re travelling on airway A202.

That kind of makes sense, as A202 is the only airway right up there at the very top of the Sanya FIR, cutting across Sanya’s landmass, and connecting the VVVV/Hanoi FIR with the ZGZU/Guangzhou FIR. All the other airways are out over the ocean, down to the South of the Sanya FIR, and not going anywhere near the Chinese mainland.

So if you want to operate on A202, you’ll need a China overflight permit. Technically, you’re supposed to submit your request to the CAA by AFTN to: ZBBBZGZX, ZGGGZBZX and ZJSYZRZX, 3 days in advance. However, unless you’ve done it before and you know what you’re doing, we suggest you just use an agent instead – dealing with the Chinese authorities direct can often be a misery.

Regardless of which airway you use, if you’re flying on a call sign, remember to put down the aircraft reg in Field 18 of the flight plan, and fill the accumulated EET to the Sanya FIR. Also, if you’re flying on L642, M771 or N892, you’ve got to be RNP10 approved, otherwise you’ll have to stay below FL280.

Overflights without a full Airworthiness Certificate

For many countries, if an aircraft is operating normally, no Overflight or Landing permit is required. Sometimes, however, the aircraft will not meet full airworthiness requirements but is still safe to fly.

New deliveries, ferry flights to a new operator, maintenance flights, or positioning to storage, may all have special circumstances that normally result in the aircraft operating with a Special Airworthiness Certificate.

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Special Airworthiness Certificates

The most common type of Special Airworthiness Certificate is a regular Ferry Permit. The FAA call this a ‘Special Flight permit’, EASA’s term is a ‘Permit to Fly’. It is issued by the Country of registration and allows an aircraft to be flown on a specific route and date, eg. for delivery, maintenance, transfer of ownership.

Other types of Special Airworthiness Certificate categories are Restricted (eg. modified special purposeaircraft like NASA’s 747SP with a telescope, or Pratt & Whitney’s 747 engine testbed), Experimental (like the Lockheed Martin X-55.

SAC

 

Special Permit (Flight Authorisation)

Every aircraft operating on a Special Airworthiness Certificate requires a Special Authorisation from each country being overflown or landed in. This is normally requested from the Ministry of Transport for that country, or the technical department of the Civil Aviation Authority. Official processing times are up to 20 days.

Specific to foreign operators flying to or over the USA, the FAA term for this is ‘Special Flight Authorization.

EU Blacklist – Special Permit

For Operators that are on the current EU Blacklist under Annex A (airlines that are banned from operating in the European Union) and Annex B (airlines that are permitted to operate in the European Union only under specific conditions), a Special Permit can also be obtained to allow flights that are required to operate to the EU for maintenance or other reasons. A separate permit is required from each EU country enroute.

Together with obtaining a Special Permit for each EU country overflown, SAFA must be notified, and the standard Eurocontrol FPL Alarming system must be deactivated for your flight.

Processing Fees

The cost to obtain a Special Permit is different for each country, according to complexity and Civil Aviation and Ministry of Transport charges.

What’s the easiest way to file a request for a Special Permit? 

Many can now be done online through the Flight Service permit tool.

Special Permit

 

 

You can also contact service@fsbureau.org for any questions.

Country Lowdown: Turkey

The latest in our series of Country Lowdowns is: Turkey. There have been some changes of late, including an exclusion for aircraft registered in countries without a bilateral agreement with Turkey, from the new overflight permit exemption. Hmmm. That’s a mouthful.

In easier language – if you’re flying an M-reg or a VP-reg aircraft, you’ll probably need an overflight permit.

We publish these Country Lowdowns on a regular basis, and they are sent directly (free) to members of OPSGROUP.

If you’d really like the one for Turkey, just email team@opsgroup.co. Or – join the group at opsgroup.co and you’ll get them all as they are published.

 

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Monday Briefing: Kanlaon Volcano Eruption, Colombia Permit requirements

Kanlaon Volcano Eruption 28DEC The Kanlaon Volcano in the Philippines erupted on 27DEC, with an initial ASHTAM issued up to FL260. Extreme caution advised for airways B472, B473, and W7. You can get the latest updates through the Tokyo VAAC.

Updated Colombia Permit requirements 22DEC For Non-Commercial aircraft, ie. Ferry flights, General Aviation – authorisation is required only if stopping in Colombia longer than 48 hours, or operating to more than 1 Colombian Airport. Updated list of document requirements in AIP Supp 22/15 issued 22DEC.


New Years closures. Check opening times carefully during the next week, as many major airports and FBO’s have closures, especially on 31DEC/01JAN.

Kxxx/USA Scattered thunderstorms, some of which will be strong to severe, will move east across Kentucky, Tennessee, eastern Mississippi, Alabama, western Georgia and the Florida Panhandle. Heavy rain will once again trigger flash flooding over portions of the South. Airports in the risk area include KATL/Atlanta, KBNA/Nashville, KMEM/Memphis, KCHA/Chattanooga, KBHM/Birmingham, KMOB/Mobile and KLEX/Lexington.

FYWH/Windhoek, Namibia has new opening hours from 23DEC, 0700-2000LT Daily.

HSSS/Khartoum, Sudan has no Jet A1 available to Ad-hoc operations between 27DEC and 05JAN. Carry return fuel or choose another tech stop.

MUFH/Havana FIR, Cuba Airspace restrictions in place 23DEC-31DEC due to staff shortages, airways UB760 and UL210 are northbound only, and between 1400-0100Z daily, all aircraft will be spaced 25nm apart through the Havana FIR, regardless of altitude.

OAKB/Kabul, Afghanistan a car bomb detonated near Kabul International Airport at approximately 0800 local time (0330 UTC) today.Taliban militants took responsibility for the attack.

UIBB/Bratsk continues to have fuel supply issues, fuel limitation extended to 12JAN

LSZH/Zurich has parking issues for Private flights, the Airport Company will generally only accept 6 hours ground time. Extended stays will require a reposition to another airport, limitation until 06JAN.

Space Weather/Polar Ops 55% risk of R1-R2 Minor to Moderate Radio Blackout risk predicted through Dec 30th. For the most up to date information please see the NOAA Space Weather Dashboard for Aviation.

LTFJ/Istanbul A Kurdish militant group has claimed responsibility for an attack at Istanbul’s second airport that killed 1 person, and threatened more assaults.

FAA/North Atlantic Aircraft operators crossing the North Atlantic have been required to include the aircraft registration and six-character hexadecimal code that is the aircraft’s address in Item 18 of their ICAO flight plans. However, an FAA review of flight plans filed during a one week period revealed that many operators were not meeting this requirement. Therefore, the agency has issued Information for Operators (InFO) 15015, which emphasizes the importance of providing the required information in the proper format.

Vxxx/India Signaling a major shift in granting air traffic rights, the government is looking at restricting the number of landing points for overseas airlines irrespective of their seat entitlements.A senior Civil Aviation Ministry official said it was looking at restricting the ports of call given to foreign airlines under bilateral rights, while remaining flexible on seat entitlements.

VAJB/Jabalpur The Aviation regulator DGCA has suspended the license of Jabalpur airport following an incident early this month, in which a herd of wild boars marched onto the runway during the taxiing of a commercial aircraft. Following suspension of its license, no flight operations can take place from Jabalpur airport, sources said adding that the AAI has been told to remove deficiencies including proper fencing of the operational area.

RKxx/South Korea South Korea’s Ministry of Health and Welfare has formally declared an end to the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) health threat on December 23. According to the Ministry of Health and Welfare, its decision follows World Health Organization. MERS was first confirmed in South Korea on 20MAY, and the last fatality from MERS-related complications in the country occurred on 25NOV.

Monday Briefing: Cuba Travel opens up, Chile Airport strike ends

Cuba Travel opening up 21DEC Negotiations between the USA and Cuba on scheduled air services between the two countries are progressing at pace; meaning that we expect to see sanctions on private US Tourism Travel lifted as early as next March. See more below.

Chile Airport Strike ends 21DEC A four day strike was ended yesterday 20DEC in Chile by the Trade Union, as 3000 Airport workers across the country responded to the governments rejection of a pension plan. Several hundred flights were cancelled. Non-scheduled operations were largely unaffected, but the risk of further action remains.


 

HUEC/Entebbe ACC, Uganda. ATC in Uganda is reporting a significant increase in the number of flights entering their airspace without prior coordination from Sudan and Congo (Khartoum and Kinshasa FIRs). Regional ATC in Africa is known to be challenging, but this warning deserves attention. Crews should make all efforts to contact each FIR 10 mins in advance – HF 11300, or relay on 126.9 if unable.

KZMA/Miami FIR SpaceX announced Sunday it has pushed back its planned launch of a Falcon 9 rocket with 11 communications satellites to 2033 ET Monday. KZMA has issued NOTAM A1357/15 for launch. It will also affect the KZJX Jacksonville FIR and TJZS San Juan FIR. The FAA will also issue tactical advisories regarding the launch and will most likely restrict operation on AR6 and AR15.

EGGX/Shanwick have issued a reminder to flights operating on the “Tango Routes” (T9, T16, T213) that HF in all cases is required to operate here, and crews should be trained in the procedures. Request OCA Clearance 50 mins in advance. Primary/Secondary HF freqs: Southbound 6547/8879, Northbound 8879/6547.

LIPH/Treviso Fuel spillage on the runway has closed the airport until 1700Z today 21DEC.

Cuba and USA Reports in the international media last week indicated that an agreement between Cuba and the US is likely to be signed early next year, allowing up to 110 scheduled flights: 20 to Havana, 10 to each of the other 9 international airports in Cuba. At present, US visitors must still fall in to one of the 12 official categories for authorised travel; however, once scheduled services are in place, we anticipate this to be the leverage to remove the final hurdle for US citizens – visiting Cuba for tourism. The first flights will likely operate in early March.

It should be noted that there are no restrictions on the Cuban side. US Aircraft can land in Havana with a routine Landing Permit issued by IACC, and US Aircraft can overfly with a routine Overflight permit. We anticipate that the requirement for a permit will stay in place as this is routine in most Latin American countries, primarily to check Navigation Fee debts and Operator Profile.

Georgia and Ukraine On 18DEC2015, the EC announced that both Georgia and Ukraine meet requirements for being granted visa-free travel to the European Union’s Schengen zone. However, the European Parliament and the EU member states must vote in favor of granting Georgia and Ukraine visa-free travel before they are able to do so. Reports indicated that the decision could be put to a vote as early as 2016.

Haiti On 19DEC, election-related demonstrations across Haiti turned violent amid accusations of electoral fraud. Violent clashes led to the burning of several government buildings. Haitian police officers stated that they were trying to restore security to the country.

Space Weather/Polar Ops moderate an ongoing G1 geomagnetic storm expected for Mon, Dec 21. Please check the NOAA Space weather aviation dashboard for the latest actuals and predictions HERE.

PAZA/Anchorage ARTCC has a number of new procedures and systems in place effective 17DEC, including 30/30 RNP4 separation, an update to the Track Advisory program for westbound Russian Tracks, and standard routings. Check the current PAZA NOTAMs for complete information.

ZBAA/Beijing authorities have issued a red alert for high levels of air pollution and reduced visibility. The alert will be effective until 22DEC. According to China’s National Meteorological Center, air pollution levels are forecast to be slightly higher than those recorded from 06-09DEC.

EGLL/EGKK London Heathrow/Gatwick Airport train links will be disrupted over Christmas. The Gatwick Express trains will stop running for 10 days due to engineering works, with the last service of 2015 leaving Victoria station at 9.15pm on Christmas Eve and the first services of 2016 scheduled for 4 January. At Heathrow, the usual one-day closure on Christmas Day will be extended by three days. Neither Heathrow Express nor Heathrow Connect trains will run from London Paddington station during the period.

UBxx/Azerbaijan will become part of the IFPS (Integrated Flight Plan System) zone as of AIRAC 1601 on 07JAN2016. Azerbaijan will delegate responsibility for the provision of flight planning services for IFR/GAT flights within the Baku FIR to the Network Manager’s Integrated Initial Flight Plan Processing System. For more info see Azerbaijan AIC 01/2016 Series A, AIP ENR 1.10, AIP ENR 1.11 and NOTAM A0126/15.

UHPP/Petropavlovsk FIR Volcano Karmsky has recently been active with ash reported up to 15,000 ft and possibly affecting ops on R220. Please check for the latest Tokyo VAAC advisories.

The ICAO Council adopted a new tracking standard for certain international flights that requires crews to report their aircraft’s positions at least every 15 minutes. It will become effective in March 2016 and applicable 08NOV2018. The new requirement also will be formalized as Amendment 39 to Annex 6—Operation of Aircraft, Part I. Only aircraft with a maximum takeoff weight of more than 59,000 pounds and a passenger seating capacity of more than 19 are affected by the rule. Also, the requirement applies to over oceanic and other remote areas, and where air traffic service is obtaining position information greater than 15-minute intervals.

Christmas and New Years closures. Check opening times carefully during the next 2 weeks, as many major airports and FBO’s have closures, especially on 24, 25, 26DEC and 31DEC/01JAN.

 

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