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Problems at Shoreham EGKA?

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Problems at Shoreham EGKA?

Old 7th Mar 2018, 20:25
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Angry Problems at Shoreham EGKA?

I hear that Shoreham is having to close for 3 days this month due to ATC staff shortages and will also be going to an 'air/ground' service only? With the amount of instrument traffic this surprises me.

Coupled with the fact that planning is being sought to build commercial properties on the NE corner of the airport as well as a large building project both residential and commercial (Ikea) being built between the airport and Lancing it makes one wonder where this is all going to end.

Those running the operational side of things at Shoreham are being as cagey as hell!

Anyone know more?

Derek
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Old 7th Mar 2018, 21:09
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Quite an extensive NOTAM detailing the changes applicable until 20th June at the earliest:

https://pilotweb.nas.faa.gov/PilotWe...trievalByICAOs
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Old 8th Mar 2018, 07:33
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What a dogs breakfast UK GA has to endure!
I was refused using the GPS approach track at Shoreham recently in VMC, because no ATC controller available!!!
Then a GPS approach requiring an NDB to legally complete.
In other countries USA, Australia for example a GPS approach can be completed with their version of ďSafetycomĒ
In IMC/IFR nearest ATC eg London, controls to radar MSA or IAP. Then transferred to A/G. Next approach not released by ATC until previous has landed.
Why do we have to reinvent the wheel?
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Old 8th Mar 2018, 10:24
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What a dogs breakfast UK GA has to endure!
I was refused using the GPS approach track at Shoreham recently in VMC, because no ATC controller available!!!
Then a GPS approach requiring an NDB to legally complete.
In other countries USA, Australia for example a GPS approach can be completed with their version of ďSafetycomĒ
In IMC/IFR nearest ATC eg London, controls to radar MSA or IAP. Then transferred to A/G. Next approach not released by ATC until previous has landed.
Why do we have to reinvent the wheel?
Its all because the big bosses at the UK CAA like to line their pockets with £50 notes... Making silly choices because they know that in some way or other it'll make them some money.

There is no reason why you need the tower controller to "clear" you for any approach or even landing at GA airports. You just need to make your intentions clear on whatever frequency is in use, and make sure everyone knows what is going on. And similarly to the USA, only 1 plane can be cleared for an approach by ATC (this doesn't have to be LTMA could be Farnborough Radar or any other LARS service) at any one time, thereby ensuring separation. If its VMC, then you can see the silly VFR pilot cutting in front of you, and if its IMC the silly VFR pilot won't be flying, and the approach is all yours! I really don't see what the fuss is about....

I am all for safety, but I disagree with some choices that were made by people who don't appear to have either common sense or the general aviation experience necessary to appropriately deal with its legislation.

(It reminds me a little of a conversation I overheard in a hospital recently, where Foundation Doctors are required to attend 70% teaching sessions to pass the year, but are only rostered to work 40-45% of the teaching days, of which 25% of the time is when they work nights and therefore cannot attend and 20% are their 1 day off per week / annual leave and 10% is their 0 hour days to recover from nights or prepare for nights - the response by the manager was "on teaching days you can sleep in the library, wake up to attend your teaching session and then go back to sleep in the library until your next shift" - because that's what a non-medic 9-5 monday to friday manager thinks is acceptable for their staff, and what they think is really is good for patients - exhausted doctors who were forced to sleep in a library...)

In Christchurch NZ, there had been a massive earthquake, the tower was evacuated, as were other ATC buildings in the country. What happened? All commercial planes, followed the standard procedures, chatted to each other to figure out landing order, and landed safely. Not a single incident... (except a lot of banter on the radio....)

I am still confused why people who don't understand, or don't want to understand GA problems, seem to be in charge of it.
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Old 8th Mar 2018, 10:57
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Originally Posted by alex90 View Post
I am still confused why people who don't understand, or don't want to understand GA problems, seem to be in charge of it.

Yep, bring on the lawyers and bean counters......!! Should sort things out...NOT!!
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Old 8th Mar 2018, 12:42
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Its all because the big bosses at the UK CAA like to line their pockets with £50 notes... Making silly choices because they know that in some way or other it'll make them some money.
Yes and welcome to UK Plc, where 99% are stuffed for the precious 1%. Nothing makes any sense. Corporates, PC correctness, Brexit, trial by social media, corrupt banks, lawyers, Chief Execs, Judiciary, why should the CAA be any different? And when you have a nation of sheeple, makes it so easy for the 1%. Stay out the system. Life is much easier....in fact, go non radio, non transponder, non everything....
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Old 8th Mar 2018, 13:35
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in fact, go non radio, non transponder, non everything....
I do! I fly some vintage planes that have none of these (or some that have radios, but the battery died on route and the spare can't be reached during flight / the battery lives in the other cockpit) - but it does make life quite difficult. We now live in a modern era of Transponder Mandatory Zones, Terminal Manoeuvring Areas, Control Terminal Areas, Aerodrome Terminal Zones... Where busting airspace is a real possibility if you navigate by sight and suddenly become unsure of your position on an unfamiliar route, (or have strayed a few miles from your anticipated route)...

But even then, I still have to adhere to so much of the UK CAA's nonsense... I still need to pay £121 (+£6 shipping) to add a single line of ink on my licence, leaving me unable to fly for several weeks, and consider myself lucky if they haven't lost or damaged my logbook in the process!

Yep, bring on the lawyers and bean counters......!! Should sort things out...NOT!!
That is why we find it so difficult to interpret the regulations, due to their long-winded never-ending sentences that don't actually say what they mean, spread over a dozen or more clauses, but might cover their arses in the event of legal action...

I am still trying to figure out what this "GA unit" that they put in place back in 2014 is actually doing for us...
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Old 8th Mar 2018, 13:37
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Originally Posted by cessnapete View Post
What a dogs breakfast UK GA has to endure!
I was refused using the GPS approach track at Shoreham recently in VMC, because no ATC controller available!!!
Then a GPS approach requiring an NDB to legally complete.
In other countries USA, Australia for example a GPS approach can be completed with their version of “Safetycom”
In IMC/IFR nearest ATC eg London, controls to radar MSA or IAP. Then transferred to A/G. Next approach not released by ATC until previous has landed.
Why do we have to reinvent the wheel?
The Pease Pottage radar, which is fed to Farnborough for LARS East sector, can 'see' Shoreham traffic in the circuit and almost down to ground level as it happens to be positioned where it looks straight through the gap in the South Downs through which the River Adur runs, in fact coverage is so good you could do a 2nm SRA into Shoreham from Farnborough. (Well that's my personal opinion but then I was only a Farnborough controller so who am I to say.)
As for carrying out any type of iap at Shoreham; this needs to be done with a controller who has an approach procedural rating which is valid for Shoreham and not all Shoreham aerodrome controllers have this rating.

Last edited by chevvron; 8th Mar 2018 at 17:57.
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Old 8th Mar 2018, 14:12
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You can be sure Shoreham Airport don’t want expensive ATCOs ruining all the pilots' fun, it will have been mandated by the Authority due to complexity or volume of traffic. Unfortunately, like almost everywhere, they are not willing to pay so remain permanently short-staffed - something the Authority aught to remedy if they had any clout about them.
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Old 8th Mar 2018, 14:54
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As for carrying out any type of iap at Shoreham; this needs to be done with a controller who has an approach procedural rating which is valid for Shoreham and not all Shoreham aerodrome controllers have this rating.
Exactly my point - I am sure Farnborough LARS (east) could clear planes one at a time to do the published approach, in a similar way to the USA, Farnborough LARS could even charge Shoreham a small "clearance given" fee to Shoreham for having to handle the flight if they felt it was appropriate. I know Shoreham charges £25 (inc vat) per "training" instrument approach (not sure about actual IMC), so couldn't that money go to the controller who offers the service, making it much easier for everyone, and giving a bonus to the controller working the shift handling flights? (even if Farnborough LARS took a commission, it'd still be welcomed I am sure!).

Biggin Hill for instance has a radar screen in the tower, but apparently no controllers with the correct rating to actually use it. All clearances for the IAPs come from (generally) Thames Radar on 132.7 - I am sure there is a financial agreement between Biggin and Thames...

It does work very well! So I don't see why all other airports couldn't join in on similar schemes, Farnborough Radar who already offer so much for free for general aviation could be the prime provider!!

Just a thought....
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Old 8th Mar 2018, 15:40
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Yes and welcome to UK Plc, where 99% are stuffed for the precious 1%. Nothing makes any sense. Corporates, PC correctness, Brexit, trial by social media, corrupt banks, lawyers, Chief Execs, Judiciary, why should the CAA be any different?
Speaking as a fully qualified one percenter, I'd like to contradict what MaxRed said.

But I can't.

What he said is true, dammit.

I very sincerely hope that Shoreham doesn't go under. It's a national asset. A treasure.
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Old 8th Mar 2018, 15:52
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There will be a lot of confused pilots if Farnborough start guiding people down the River Arun . . .
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Old 8th Mar 2018, 16:32
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Cazalet33;10077191]Speaking as a fully qualified one percenter, I'd like to contradict what MaxRed said.

But I can't.

What he said is true, dammit.
Fully agree with MaxRed


I very sincerely hope that Shoreham doesn't go under. It's a national asset. A treasure.
Sorry but no it isnít, they jumped on the band wagon years ago screwing every penny from its customers, e.g. how on earth can you justify a £25 charge for a GPS approach thatís outside controlled airspace and costs virtually nothing to run

Airports like these deserve whatís coming but itís a great shame for all their customers to loose such a facility, Blackpool is another example.

The UK general aviation system needs a huge wake up call.
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Old 8th Mar 2018, 16:44
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Yes, I get them mixed up too even though being resident near the head waters of both the Arun & Adur I ought to know better !

mikehallam.
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Old 8th Mar 2018, 17:58
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Originally Posted by Prop swinger View Post
There will be a lot of confused pilots if Farnborough start guiding people down the River Arun . . .
Ok I've corrected it now; bear in mind I haven't done LARS East for over 9 years!
Just after I left, I heard the General Manager of Farnborough ATC agreed that Farnborough ATC could do SRAs into Blackbushe but I heard nothing further; obviously it didn't happen but I don't know why(but we did do them on request back in the mid '70s when I first arrived at Farnborough).
If Shoreham requested a service from Farnborough, I'm sure the present GM might consider it, same goes for any other airfield in the LARS areas.
I understand the Walney Island ILS can only be used if the aircraft initially works Warton Radar (Walney being AFIS), so there is a precedent.
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Old 8th Mar 2018, 18:34
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On this side of the pond, approaches are free and landing fees are rare, so Iím confused by this situation.

Out of interest, I looked up the Shoreham GPS approach plates. If itís a VMC day, what is to stop someone starting the procedure and then when established on the inbound track, calling up the Tower and requesting a straight-in approach?
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Old 8th Mar 2018, 18:46
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Originally Posted by India Four Two View Post
On this side of the pond, approaches are free and landing fees are rare, so Iím confused by this situation.

Out of interest, I looked up the Shoreham GPS approach plates. If itís a VMC day, what is to stop someone starting the procedure and then when established on the inbound track, calling up the Tower and requesting a straight-in approach?
Provided the pilot does not enter the ATZ until cleared by the tower..who's to know?
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Old 9th Mar 2018, 07:14
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Originally Posted by chevvron View Post
Provided the pilot does not enter the ATZ until cleared by the tower..who's to know?

But if there is only an A/G service, which the NOTAMs state, they cannot be stopped from entering the ATZ
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Old 9th Mar 2018, 11:11
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If you want to blame anyone, blame EASA that set the increasingly stringent ATC standards and have made the UK CAA little more than a regional branch.


This is becoming a common problem across all airports in the UK, even the largest airports. ATCOs are expensive to train and employ and it takes time. Meanwhile like all skilled industries there is a retirement cliff, where experienced ATCOs are leaving in their droves having done their time and are collecting their pensions. It's not easy to become an ATCO either. Smaller/more remote airfields often have problems recruiting due to lower wages than the bigger units, less promotion prospects, the lure of working at a "prestigious" unit and perhaps most of all, many simply don't want to live in remote areas and want to stick to the big cities (bonkers IMO, so many places can offer such a better quality of live rather than living in over-polluted over-crowded holes full of overpriced houses and pants restaurant chains...)


It's becoming one of the major drivers of Remote Towers (aside from the bigger and real/more obvious reasons).
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Old 9th Mar 2018, 11:50
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Originally Posted by TelsBoy View Post
If you want to blame anyone, blame EASA that set the increasingly stringent ATC standards and have made the UK CAA little more than a regional branch.


This is becoming a common problem across all airports in the UK, even the largest airports. ATCOs are expensive to train and employ and it takes time. Meanwhile like all skilled industries there is a retirement cliff, where experienced ATCOs are leaving in their droves having done their time and are collecting their pensions. It's not easy to become an ATCO either. Smaller/more remote airfields often have problems recruiting due to lower wages than the bigger units, less promotion prospects, the lure of working at a "prestigious" unit and perhaps most of all, many simply don't want to live in remote areas and want to stick to the big cities (bonkers IMO, so many places can offer such a better quality of live rather than living in over-polluted over-crowded holes full of overpriced houses and pants restaurant chains...)


It's becoming one of the major drivers of Remote Towers (aside from the bigger and real/more obvious reasons).

Telsboy is spot on. NATS changed its training methodologies so there is no longer a pool of ADI rated "resting" NATS trainees for the regionals to recruit from. Couple that with NATS recruiting from the regionals for the first time in many years which has created a conduit for regional airport ATCOs to move into NATS (perceived best employer better T&Cs) and you have a perfect storm for recruitment and retention for the lower end regionals and the GA centric aerodromes. To replace a fully rated ATCO (normally on a 3 month notice period) will take 6-9 months with a rated ATCO (few available) or 18 to 24 months with an ATCA that you sponsor through college and training.

This results in either a capability gap due to the lack of staff or having to stomach paying 10-15% more to replace each ATCO that leaves.

This is market forces . . . . some of the figures I've heard of rumoured % pay-awards that Airports are considering, just to ensure they RETAIN staff, are quite eye watering.

Interesting times ahead . . . . .

Fred
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