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Question about Danger Areas

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Question about Danger Areas

Old 25th Aug 2015, 22:06
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Question about Danger Areas

Hi there,

I'd appreciate if a controller could help answer this question - both officially AND practically.

First question: The UK has this really strange IFR OCAS which causes untold confusion to foreign pilots. OCAS whilst receiving a basic or traffic service, will 'information' or 'radar' advise a pilot if a danger area is active on the proposed route of flight? I don't mean to sound like a dummy but the NOTAMs are almost impossible to fully understand sometimes.

Second question: is an airways/CAS rejoin guaranteed after a section of flight exits CAS for GA aircraft?

VT
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Old 26th Aug 2015, 05:53
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1. OCAS is certainly confusing. If it seems to the controller that you are heading towards an active danger area it is very likely but not 100% guaranteed they will tell you.

2. No
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Old 26th Aug 2015, 09:44
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1. Information will not have radar and if given a poor position report and a vague routing, may not realise that your track will take you through a Danger Area. A free utility is SkyDemon Light (others probably also available) which will give you preplanning for active DA's, however the responsibility is firmly with you to make sure that the area is not active before transiting. If it doubt, remain clear- being unable to decode a perhaps complex NOTAM is no excuse Why not simply ask the FISO/Controller if Dxxx is active?

2. As already said.
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Old 26th Aug 2015, 11:41
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There are two services available from ÁTC for this scenario, DAAIS and DACS.
Designated ATSUs are responsible for the former, Danger Area Activity Information Service and are notified as such on CAA published charts; this information may not be included if you're using a chart from a 'private' supplier like Jeppesen.
DACS or Danger Area Crossing Service is also available from certain ATSUs which are radar equipped and are also notified on CAA published charts.
The above information is also in the UK AIP ,but I'm not sure if things like Sky Demon include it.
As Bigears said, simply ask the nearest ATSU if you're not sure.
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Old 27th Aug 2015, 12:41
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Second question: is an airways/CAS rejoin guaranteed after a section of flight exits CAS for GA aircraft?
Officially, no, not guaranteed.

Practically, quite a few situations where it is as good as guaranteed but if in doubt just check. If you have filed or are limited to a level and the airway base steps up above you before coming back down, then it would be very unusual and more than a bit harsh to not get a clearance back in! Some examples, p600 ADN to PTH at FL 100 or below, N601 POL - TLA at FL120 or below in daytime.

Hope this is more use!
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Old 28th Aug 2015, 13:09
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I assume, the London Information generally has a radar scope for relevant parts. They seem to have a good idea where we are. Suspect, since it's not official OR certified accurate, they don't admit to seeing you on screen. Would that be reasonable?

Is it best just to say, 'routing point A to point B, please confirm danger areas are cold?' (assuming we've already checked NOTAMs to agree with such).

VT
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Old 28th Aug 2015, 13:33
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London information as do Scottish information have a FID ( Flight Information Display) it is basically a radar display both Primary and Secondary and also mode S capable at Scottish. As the sectors are only manned by FISO's the staff are not valid in its use as a radar and is only to be used as an airspace infringement tool. By that I mean if we think an aircraft we are providing a BS to and in relation to the planned route the pilot has told us he intends to follow, although the flight at no time is officially identified at times we may realise from the observation we make on the FID that a flight may infringe CAS or an active danger area. If this is the case we would arrange a radar service from a nearby radar unit to hopefully stop the infringement happening.
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Old 28th Aug 2015, 14:03
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Originally Posted by VORTIME View Post
I assume, the London Information generally has a radar scope for relevant parts. They seem to have a good idea where we are. Suspect, since it's not official OR certified accurate, they don't admit to seeing you on screen. Would that be reasonable?

Is it best just to say, 'routing point A to point B, please confirm danger areas are cold?' (assuming we've already checked NOTAMs to agree with such).

VT
When I last visited London Info (back in 2008) the FID was some distance from the RTF position (may have been moved since) and the display was filtered to only show '1177s'.
The FISO (Area) could call up DA activity almost instantly by typing the DA number into his computer.
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Old 29th Aug 2015, 10:26
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They have a radar screen at the end of the console which is the same as the rest of the AC ops room, to that matter, they have limited functionality although can see the same information.
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