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Procedural Approach

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Procedural Approach

Old 17th Sep 2013, 00:11
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Procedural Approach

Just a quick question: when cleared for a procedural approach from LIMES to RWY 07 why is it some crews end up flying LIMES direct FAP iso LIMES-TONIC/STELA-IF-FAP?

Just trying to weed out any ambiguity in the clearance as the corner cutting defeats the purpose of ensuring a stabilized approach via the procedure, not to mention the increased heart rate as the direct track just skirts high terrain

Thanks,
C
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Old 17th Sep 2013, 00:51
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There is no ambiguity, there is the right way and the wrong way. If you have witnessed the latter I suggest you ask the crews concerned why they have flown contrary to their clearance!
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Old 17th Sep 2013, 01:05
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Absolutely. These days ATC have been using the clearance "from LIMES cleared procedural ILS 07L/R via TONIC/STELA" (or similar!). I guess that's because some idiots like to cut the corner instead of following the procedure. No prizes for guessing which airline is the main culprit.

Last edited by BuzzBox; 17th Sep 2013 at 01:07.
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Old 17th Sep 2013, 01:10
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C,

My aircraft and I love that clearance!

I can't see why anyone wouldn't have the transition programmed when that is how the approach is published. I believe that a message to phone ATC after landing is necessary, and you could reasonably take further action if you really wanted.

Please keep giving that clearance to those who can understand it.

Joe
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Old 17th Sep 2013, 13:57
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No prizes for guessing which airline is the main culprit.
I give up.
Tell me.
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Old 17th Sep 2013, 13:57
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Is it Ryanair?
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Old 18th Sep 2013, 14:41
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Philippinos Airways?
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Old 18th Sep 2013, 17:38
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I know . . . . jetstar !
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Old 18th Sep 2013, 21:08
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Regarding the procedural approach, when is it required to cross Limes at 4500/210 or TD at 8000? I am sometimes told to delete the restriction because "its only required for a procedural approach." Isn't cleared for the approach from Limes a procedural approach? Am I missing something?
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Old 18th Sep 2013, 21:57
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Good question BBB. We used to have either a note in the port page or an NTC about the 8000' at TD and the AIP says "as directed by ATC" although I don't think you can be expected to know that.
For the LIMES restriction, I can't see any way that you can legally get rid of it if cleared the procedure from LIMES but happy to be corrected!
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 00:32
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Thanks to all for your input. Regarding questioning the erroneous crews we don't get much constructive feedback, merely ”ohhs” and ”didn't realize” etc. Whether right or wrong it would be nice to know if anything in the procedure could be construed as ”optional” or if any traps exist in terms of how procedural approaches are executed generally against our published ones. As for including TONIC/LIMES in the clearance, it makes them ”wordy” where we like simple and furthermore shouldn't we then also include ”remember to follow the descent profile” (which also seems to cause confusion) and ”remember to intercept LLZ” (which has also happened). In other words, what's the point of a published procedure if it has to be spelled out.

Reference altitude restriction at LIMES or TD it is expected that you know what is published in the AIP i.e. ”or as directed by ATC”. Most controllers interpret that as you should descend to whatever altitude cleared to without regard to the 4500/8000 commencement altitude unless specifically cleared 4500/8000 and approach. When there is a sequence to be handled controllers generally don't want to commit themselves to early to the procedural approach as it only takes one ”misinterpretation” of the procedure to cause a separation issue. Hence you might find yourself at a point where it is too late to adhere to the 4500/8000 when cleared for an approach. Which again is why most controllers simply stick to vectored approaches iso the official push for procedural approaches when traffic permits.
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 04:29
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Philippinos Airways?
Actually, I've personally heard a Cathay tripple get reamed out and asked to contact the tower upon landing because they did not fly the procedure from LIMES. You would be surprised how poor the instrument procedures knowledge is amongst some of the crew here in Cathay. I think it comes from the fact that turnover is low, so it has been a very long time since any of these guys have reviewed them or studied anything that is not in a company manual.

caspertfg, no, your understanding of "procedural" is correct. The problem is probably multi-faceted, as is the range of airlines that you get in HKG. But you could kill at least 50% of your problem by making sure the local carriers understand what "procedural" means.

I must admit though, than when it comes to altitude compliance, the industry has really muddied up the waters beyond recognition. There has been so much flip-flopping in regards to compliance with published altitudes that a lot of confusion has spread, and now the only option is to confirm with the controller. I wish this wasn't so, but unfortunately, it is. If the industry would just agree to follow one standard then this whole mess could be avoided.

IMHO, the altitudes published on the ILSs to the 07s are required if cleared for the procedure. At least, that is how I would interpret it. It does not make any sense to do it otherwise since an approach clearance means you need to descend. The only way to know how to manage that descend is by the approach plate.

Please also bear in mind that Cathay (and maybe Dragonair as well?) has recently switched to a terrible chart provider that does not even come close to the quality we had with Jeppessen. These charts are so useless that we actually carry a critique form to fill out on all flight in order to point out the mistakes - sometimes pretty large ones. This has led to a bit of second guessing these charts, especially when they differ from the old Jepps.
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 05:35
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Another way of looking at it:

Under radar control, you are cleared "direct LIMES, descend to altitude 3,000 ft". What altitude would you descend to? I would humbly suggest you could descend to 3,000 ft and reach that altitude before LIMES.

Adding "from LIMES, cleared procedural ILS 07L/R" does nothing to change the descent clearance, except that after LIMES you must follow the procedure as published. If ATC wanted you to cross LIMES at 4,500 ft (or above), then surely the clearance would be "direct LIMES, descend to altitude 4,500 ft, from LIMES cleared procedural ILS 07L/R"?
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 05:52
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ATC type can correct me if I'm wrong:

1. If cleared procedurally, a no brainer - full track via Tonic.

2. If cleared to descend 3000' and from Limes, cleared for ILS07L/R, then 4500 does not apply at Limes.
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 06:35
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I must admit though, than when it comes to altitude compliance, the industry has really muddied up the waters beyond recognition. There has been so much flip-flopping in regards to compliance with published altitudes that a lot of confusion has spread, and now the only option is to confirm with the controller.
My understanding is that these changes only relate to climb/descent restrictions published on SIDs or STARs (ICAO Doc 4444 PANS-ATM). For example, when an aircraft arriving on a STAR is cleared to descend to an altitude lower than that specified on the STAR, the aircraft must comply with the published vertical profile, unless the restrictions are explicitly cancelled by ATC.

The restrictions at LIMES/TD are part of the published instrument approach, not the STAR. As someone else pointed out above, the HK AIP states the altitude restrictions as 4,500 ft/8,000 ft or as directed by ATC. That little snippet of information is missing from the Navtech charts. The upshot is that if you are cleared to a lower altitude by ATC, you can descend to that altitude and ignore the published restriction. As someone else also said, if in doubt, ASK.

Last edited by BuzzBox; 19th Sep 2013 at 07:39.
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 07:21
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If cleared for a procedural ILS 'descend to 4500' direct Limes', you proceed to Limes, which you cross at 4500' and then set 1700 and descend to that altitude.
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 10:35
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Casper, I agree whole heartedly with your first paragraph. You should be able to clear someone for the procedural ILS and expect them to fly via all the points on the procedure and intercept the ILS whilst meeting all the speed and height restrictions. If they don't do that without specific clearance to do otherwise then they're doing it wrong.

In your second paragraph you say we should know what the AIP says. We don't carry AIPs, we carry Navtech charts that translate them for us in an easily digested format. They don't say "or as directed by ATC" but simply have the restriction of 8000' at TD and 4500' at LIMES. In fact, the AIP doesn't even state "or as directed" for the LIMES restriction.

You could probably expect most pilots of Hong Kong carriers to delete the 8000' restriction but not foreign based carriers. Personally I leave the LIMES restriction in. It's a not below so it won't fly me down below profile, it keeps the speed in the box and it's not a million miles away from where I want to be anyway.
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 10:51
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In fact, the AIP doesn't even state "or as directed" for the LIMES restriction.
Yes it does. Check out the profile view:


Last edited by BuzzBox; 19th Sep 2013 at 11:11.
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 17:29
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Thanks Buzzbox, I thought it was a bit odd. That'll teach me to trust the first page google sends me to!
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Old 20th Sep 2013, 01:53
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Loop, just a bit further on the AIP issue as I see it. The AIP is CAD's official publication channel for procedures. If airlines decide to use other map issuer's products it's the airline's responsibility to ensure these contain all pertinent data. ATC only uses the AIP and is thus not able to pick out any discrepancy, until of course, it presents itself in form of repeated violations of expected behaviour. Like for instance the thread issue here: non-compliance with approach track.
Treating LIMES and TD differently I don't quite get?
I do agree with Sqwak that a certain industry/ICAO induced confusion, reference altitude/level restrictions, exists.
And I agree with Rick.Shaw, this is how ATC generally perceives the issue.
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