Av Hazard publicizes safety and operational concerns to help prevent accidents but it works only if we hear from you. Use the postage-free Av Hazard card to describe the hazard and return it to Pro Pilot. To obtain an official FAA review send NASA an ASRS form. For immediate action, call the airport, FBO, ATC, FSDO or the 24-hour FAA Safety Hotline at 800-255-1111. Note: Telephone numbers for all US Towers and ARTCCs are published in Ac-U-Kwik and Pilots Express Airport/Heliport/FBO directories. To report safety concerns outside the US, contact ICAO HQ at 514-954-8219 or via fax at 514-954-6077. ICAO has worldwide telephone and fax numbers to expedite Av Hazard reports to civil aviation authorities.
Rampant passengers on ramp
On 01-04-11 at 11:45 MST, I was following about 100 ft behind the "follow me" cart at EGE (Eagle CO) when a group of passengers darted in between the cart and myself, causing me to step on the brakes, sliding a few feet on the icy ramp so as not to hit the people as they went to board the NetJets Citation Sovereign. Half of the group of passengers was smart enough not to attempt this maneuver, whereas the other half executed it. The Vail Valley Jet Center employee who was parking me tried desperately to wave them off, but was ignored. What troubled me here is that the passengers were led by a flightcrew member of said aircraft, who appeared more concerned about the quick straight line boarding of his aircraft than the overall safety of those same people.
I am a frequent visitor at EGE, and the couple I work for have lived in Beaver Creek since 1992, but the past few years have produced more "close calls" between wandering passengers and aircraft than anyone cares for. This one was different, though, in that the passengers were being led by a NetJets flightcrew member, and the incident could have been avoided.
Vail Valley Jet Center is doing everything it can to prevent this from happening, but are facing a losing battle. Lots of these potentially hazardous acts can be prevented with a little common sense. Remember—the ramp there is often iced over, and it is not easy to stop. These encounters are on the rise—let's try to make an effort to stop them before anyone gets hurt. We have the privilege to move freely about the VVJC's ramp, let's not ruin that. Let's do our part as flightcrew members to make the ramp as safe as possible.
_ATP, Premier IA
- It may sound like a cliché, but everyone is a safety officer. Aviation ramps are dangerous places and icy conditions in winter make them far more treacherous. Many of these hazards can be properly mitigated by having flightcrews escort passengers to and from the aircraft safely. Of course, this whole theory is based on flightcrews behaving professionally and taking extra time to move passengers around the ramp safely and correctly in all conditions. We are our brother's keeper in the aviation world. The flight is not over until all our passengers have arrived safely at their destination.
Aircraft causing glideslope interference
While inside the final approach fix (FAF) on Rwy 19 ILS at TEB (Teterboro NJ) and cleared for the ILS, we experienced large glideslope deviations above and below the glidepath. We called the tower to notify them and they advised me, "We just crossed a Global on Runway 19." This aircraft movement must have blocked or disturbed the glideslope antenna, causing erroneous indications. Approaching aircraft should be warned by ATC when such movement may disrupt instrument landing indications, especially at night or in IMC.
_ATP, Gulfstream V
- Instrument landing systems have a defined ILS critical area to ensure the integrity of both the localizer and glideslope signals during periods of poor weather. When the ceiling is lower than 800 ft and/or the visibility is less than 2 miles, aircraft or vehicles are not permitted inside the ILS critical area when aircraft are on final approach and inside the outer marker (OM) or the fix used in lieu of the OM. An exception is if the arriving aircraft has reported the field in sight or is performing a circling maneuver to land on another runway.
According to the Aeronautical Information Manual (AIM), para 4-3-18, a8, ATC must issue instructions for the aircraft to hold short of the ILS critical area hold line or an ILS approach area. Pilots may not know whether aircraft are inbound on the ILS and inside the FAF—however, if the weather is below 800-2 and ATC did not issue instructions, it may be wise to ask ATC if you need to hold at the ILS critical area hold line. (See diagram below.)
The ATC Controller Handbook also requires ATC to advise pilots that the critical area will not be protected if the pilot informs ATC they are performing coupled, Cat III autoland procedures when the reported ceiling is 800 ft or more and the visibility is 2 miles or more.