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USA flights stopped. FAA computer outage.

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USA flights stopped. FAA computer outage.

Old 14th Jan 2023, 10:12
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I'll just say, MechEngr, for now anyway, that if an observer focuses response to the oversight letter on the Chairman, Rep. Graves (I'm not on a first-name basis with Cabinet Secretaries or Members of Congress), without considering, (i) the letter bears the signature of the Ranking Member; (ii) 120 other Members inked it also; (iii) this letter was completed and in a manner which gained this quite evident bipartisan support and endorsement very quickly - despite the rancor and sideshow nonsense so popular in some precincts of the Congress - then it does seem that such an observer has some sort of bias unfavorably inclined toward the Chairman.

Is it your position, Mech (I guess I can start on this forum, acquiring first-name propers with people so knowledgeable about the ways and workings on Capitol Hill) that no oversight is called for? Unless your answer is an unequivocal "yes" - meaning you think nothing should emanate from the Committee in the nature of oversight - and since you obviously do not approve of the letter just issued, what would the oversight letter you would write, or approve and sign, say? I know I'm pressing attorney form here, so if you propose some different content as proper oversight, you can skip - omit - the footnotes in very neat Bluebook form.
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Old 14th Jan 2023, 17:07
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Originally Posted by WillowRun 6-3
I'll just say, MechEngr, for now anyway, that if an observer focuses response to the oversight letter on the Chairman, Rep. Graves (I'm not on a first-name basis with Cabinet Secretaries or Members of Congress), without considering, (i) the letter bears the signature of the Ranking Member; (ii) 120 other Members inked it also; (iii) this letter was completed and in a manner which gained this quite evident bipartisan support and endorsement very quickly - despite the rancor and sideshow nonsense so popular in some precincts of the Congress - then it does seem that such an observer has some sort of bias unfavorably inclined toward the Chairman.

Is it your position, Mech (I guess I can start on this forum, acquiring first-name propers with people so knowledgeable about the ways and workings on Capitol Hill) that no oversight is called for? Unless your answer is an unequivocal "yes" - meaning you think nothing should emanate from the Committee in the nature of oversight - and since you obviously do not approve of the letter just issued, what would the oversight letter you would write, or approve and sign, say? I know I'm pressing attorney form here, so if you propose some different content as proper oversight, you can skip - omit - the footnotes in very neat Bluebook form.
It has become too common these days to let party affiliation or preference color an assessment, even when a bipartisan effort is made in good faith by members of Congress (in those rare cases that they do drop their cordons and agree on a position) where they wish to hold the Executive Branch to account. The attitude of "one drop of {party one dislikes} contaminates the whole gallon" is far too common.
Your post is well presented, and neutral in tone. Thanks for providing that kind of input.
How a bipartisan committee can lead an effort to idiot proof whatever it is that the FAA is doing remains to be seen ... given the number of idiots on Capitol Hill in the first place. Less tongue in cheek: I applaud their efforts, in a bipartisan manner, to basically tell the Executive Branch "You can do better!"
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Old 14th Jan 2023, 23:54
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Originally Posted by dragon6172
Will they issue a NOTAM that the NOTAM system is not working?
no lie, this has been in all of my briefings on flightaware as the first NOTAM for the last 48 hrs:

FAA NOTAMS ARE UPDATING INTERMITTENTLY DUE TO FAA SYSTEM OUTAGE. THIS MESSAGE WILL BE AMENDED WHEN MORE INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE AND REMOVED WHEN FAA UPDATES REMAIN STABLE.
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Old 17th Jan 2023, 14:52
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Seeing you all got so distracted with the thread drift globally about the naming gender issue, can I just to chime in very late and politely ask if NOTAM actually refers to Notice to Air Males?

Gotta get my PC wokeness out of my system somehow.

Last edited by Thirsty; 17th Jan 2023 at 15:00. Reason: sarcasm indicator - got to universally annoy all
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Old 19th Jan 2023, 06:41
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I'm not much for conspiracy theories but whatever root cause the simultaneous "unrelated" Canadian outage has, I'll be interested to hear. I mean, that's a heck of a coincidence.

Originally Posted by Maninthebar
A corrupted database is apparently to blame. Though this raises questions as to
1. How the database became corrupted
2.What mechanisms are in pace to detect corruption
3.Whether any shadow copy is in place (or should be) for failover in such a circumstance
Wellllp, whenever one person making a mistake in a (software) deployment can cause a system to fail, it will fail sooner or later.

Decades of software engineering experience informing my opinion here, including multiple incidents creating regional/national/worldwide outages evolving right in front of me.

"Two person rule" is helpful in reducing the risk in deployments to production, but there need to be more "Swiss cheese" measures in place to reduce the likelihood that a single mistake will make it all the way to production.
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Old 20th Jan 2023, 15:23
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Per FoxNews: "FAA acting administrator Billy Nolen plans to hold a virtual briefing Friday for lawmakers and staff who have sought details of what went wrong."

It also seems that it was a contractor performing an upgrade of some type - the sort of activity that was requested of the FAA with that "private industry" tie in so often sought.

They were, ironically, intending to synchronize with the back-up database.
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Old 20th Jan 2023, 17:37
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MechEngr, are you conflating two separate things?

Probably like many agencies throughout the federal complex, FAA utilizes private contractors for functions with regard to which it would be a significant budgetary (and in many instances, management) burden to staff the function within the agency's own personnel. And, given the very-legacy legacy nature of the Notam system, it would make sense that FAA would not choose to have limited budget resources dedicated to staffing the software end of an old system - as opposed to hiring the expertise from a federal contractor.

But having specific functions staffed and performed by contractor personnel, under contract with the agency, is quite a different structure or arrangement than "privatizing" the entire ATC - NAS-management set of functions into a new, separate entity (which is a fair if also incomplete description of how Canada, among others, changed its structure).

Reasonable people can differ about whether proposals for carving out ATC and NAS-management and shifting these to a non-profit or otherwise non-governmental structure are wise, stupid, indeterminant, wonky, or irrelevant. But if the subject instead is not having what probably are tens of thousands federal contractor personnel doing software work across the entire interagency landscape continue in that role, whoa, that's a long and difficult carry. At altitude. With an over-limits pack weighing you down. On no rest. And your canteen just went down a crevice.
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Old 20th Jan 2023, 18:08
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There is a very lucrative 'niche' industry that's grown up around supporting the aging computer infrastructure. Most companies can't keep dedicated people who know and understand the older programing systems/languages (Fortran anyone?), and the big chip manufacturers can't be bothered to maintain production of decades old component designs. OTOH, it was cost huge money to replace the hardware and software of large computer systems that date back to the 20th century. So these companies provide contract support services to maintain both the hardware and software of those older systems - and can charge handsomely for it.
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Old 22nd Jan 2023, 04:10
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The NOTAM Improvement Act of 2023

As it turns out, the House passed legislation in the previous Congress (the 117th) as well as the one before that (116th) seeking to address problems in the NOTAM system; obviously the legislation went nowhere in the Senate.

On September 12 of this year, Rep. Pete Stauber (representing Minnesota's 8th Congressional District, and a member of the GOP Conference), reintroduced the legislation, the NOTAM Improvement Act of 2023. (H.R. 346; items re: prior legislation from Rep. Stauber's website). The main feature of the measure is to authorize and direct FAA to empanel a "task force" to address specific aspects of the NOTAM system.

To elaborate, FAA Adminstrator would be directed to appoint representatives, with expertise, from several aviation sectors and constituencies. These are air carriers; labor unions; general and business aviation; aviation safety (with specific knowledge re: NOTAMs); human factors; and computer system architecture and cybersecurity.

The list of tasks for the task force appears fairly broad and encompassing -

DUTIES.—The duties of the Task Force shall include—
(1) reviewing existing methods for presenting NOTAMs and flight operations information to pilots;
(2) reviewing regulations and policies relating to NOTAMs, including their content and presentation to pilots;
(3) evaluating and determining best practices to organize, prioritize, and present flight operations information in a manner that optimizes pilot review and retention of relevant information; and
(4) providing recommendations for—
(A) improving the presentation of NOTAM information in a manner that prioritizes or highlights the most important information, and optimizes pilot review and retention of relevant information;
(B) ways to ensure that NOTAMs are complete, accurate, and contain the proper information;
(C) any best practices that the FAA should consider to improve the accuracy and understandability of NOTAMs and the display of flight operations information;
(D) ways to work with air carriers, other airspace users, and aviation service providers to implement solutions that are aligned with the recommendations under this paragraph; and
(E) ensuring the stability, resiliency, and cybersecurity of the NOTAM computer system.

The legislation directs a report to Congress within one year on results of the task force's work with respect to the first three items listed above; any best practices and recommedations identified by the task force pursuant to the fourth item; and any recommendations for additional regulatory or policy actions to "improve the presentation of NOTAMs". The bill also requires an answer as to "the degree to which implementing the recommendations" with regard to best practices "will address [NTSB] Safety Recomendation A-18-024."

As probably nearly everyone reading this thread already anticipates, or already knows, the referenced NTSB Safety Recommendation is part of the set of Safety Recommendations NTSB published as of Oct. 11, 2018 (adopted on Sept. 25, 2018) in the follow-up to the "Taxiway Overflight" incident involving Air Canada 759 at San Francisco International Airport on July 7, 2017. (In an NTSB hearing on that incident, Chairman Sumwalt referred to the NOTAMs as "garbage".) The fact that Runway 2-8 Left was closed was, in fact, included in the NOTAMs given to the crew of the incident flight, although it was deep within the quantity of pages, and iirc was either not seen or not recalled by the aviators. (Not rehearsing the other salient details of the incident here....) So, it may have taken a system crash to get attention focused on the creakiness of the NOTAM system, but as it has been said before, the times, they are a-changin'.

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Old 22nd Jan 2023, 20:40
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Originally Posted by WillowRun 6-3
.) So, it may have taken a system crash to get attention focused on the creakiness of the NOTAM system, but as it has been said before, the times, they are a-changin'.
Indeed . But ATC has always been reactive to accidents /incidents. We always have to wait things make the headlines to have things changed. We all know since at least 30 years that we have to modernise the NOTAM system and change things into plain language instead of abbrevaitions and codes made during WW2 when the first NOTAMs had to be sent by Morse code and later by teletypes. In fact it is partially our own collectve fault that we are still acceping this today as a fact of life.
The US Congress might have good initatives, but the FAA cannot do this alone, ICAO would need to be invoved , and the old lady is (very) slow..
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Old 23rd Jan 2023, 01:27
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The FAA is on schedule to adopt the ICAO classification schema by 2024. However, it turns out that the IACO has its own problems with an even larger lack of uniformity, so that's about all that is getting copied.

The most interesting part of NOTAMs is the FAA isn't solely responsible for originating the messages, which is where the lack of uniformity starts. The airport operators are in the lead and they send these out to cover their butts.

This is the likely reason the legislation, put up by at least 2 reps, died, even though that one passed the house.

I had a larger writeup but quit it because the legislators are behind the actual curve the FAA is working on.

https://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/flig..._Operators.pdf
https://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/flig...eronav/notams/

From the latter:
On the second Tuesday of each month, FAA holds a virtual meeting for interested NOTAM Stakeholders, all NOTAM consumers or originators are welcome to attend.

To add your name to the address list or for additional information contact, Jill Witter
Look - there's already a task force. Stauber and Graves can sign up.

Pete Stauber has submitted a new one - https://www.congress.gov/bill/118th-...%5D%7D&r=1&s=1 Looks like the same thing, different date.

Last edited by MechEngr; 23rd Jan 2023 at 01:47.
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Old 26th Jan 2023, 13:33
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Rep. Stauber's bill, H.R. 346, was passed by the House of Representatives on January 25 by a vote of 424 to 4 (according to a T&I Committee email).

The existing FAA vehicle for input is not the same thing as a statutorily authorized task force with designated representation from relevant sectors and a legislative mandate to report to Congress.

Also iirc the Secretary's written responses to questions presented in the recent oversight letter were due to be provided on the 25th. Likewise the Secretary's briefing for Congress. Perhaps these dates have been deferred or finessed; I think Acting FAA Admin. Nolen recently briefed some people in Congress.
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Old 28th Jan 2023, 00:16
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Originally Posted by MechEngr
The FAA is on schedule to adopt the ICAO classification schema by 2024. However, it turns out that the IACO has its own problems with an even larger lack of uniformity, so that's about all that is getting copied.

The most interesting part of NOTAMs is the FAA isn't solely responsible for originating the messages, which is where the lack of uniformity starts. The airport operators are in the lead and they send these out to cover their butts.

This is the likely reason the legislation, put up by at least 2 reps, died, even though that one passed the house.

I had a larger writeup but quit it because the legislators are behind the actual curve the FAA is working on.

https://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/flig..._Operators.pdf
https://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/flig...eronav/notams/

From the latter:

Look - there's already a task force. Stauber and Graves can sign up.

Pete Stauber has submitted a new one - https://www.congress.gov/bill/118th-...%5D%7D&r=1&s=1 Looks like the same thing, different date.
As an airport manager, I would like to spread some knowledge on how the NOTAM system works(or actually fails to work) from the other side(submitter). Every 15-26 months, a contract inspector comes to my airport, and inspects it for all operational equipment, and anything related to safe operation on the airport, even if we aren't responsible for it. Example, There are two power poles about 400' from the threshold of one runway, and 8 deg off center. Are they a hazard to navigation? Not to me, I know where they are and I know not to make a low and off-center approach. The poles are pretty easily visible, as they have a yellow band at the top. However, each inspection the power poles are noted on my inspection with height, location, and distance from the threshold.

Now, since the inspector makes a report, and notes these poles they have become a 'hazard'. So, I have two choices. I can NOTAM the poles, or I can remark them in the operation notes of the airport master record. In fact, I'm supposed to do both. I didn't have a choice as the inspector will submit the inspection to the FAA, and then it's cast in stone, and I can't do anything about it from a reporting standpoint. I've contacted the utility, and they tell me they will move them, but unless I pay for it, they will do it on their schedule, and I have to wait. These poles are not on my airfield, there's nothing I can do about them myself.

I don't want to NOTAM them as I don't think they are a factor for anyone with more than 8 working brain cells that would make an off-center, very low(65 feet) approach. But - it could happen so not reporting them to the NOTAM people leaves me in the "well, why didn't you report the poles" in case some jackass hits them. I mean, seriously, the poles are only 4 feet from the edge of the road, and yet no driver would hold the city or county or property owner liable if they smashed into them with a car, so WTF about a plane hitting one and blaming me? So, every 6 months, I write an email renewing my NOTAM for the poles. I don't want to do it, and I don't have to do it, but the FAA is going to come along and give me **** about it, unless I have the removed or leave them and publish the NOTAM.

I want to take a chain saw over and do the deed, but there's another liability for me if I do the right thing. Trust me, we have enough paperwork to do without make-work developed by the FAA and their contractors.
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Old 28th Jan 2023, 04:00
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Keep in mind that one driver for NOTAM reform was the near accident of landing on an occupied taxiway in spite of a NOTAM indicating one of the parallel runways was closed, therefore not lighted, and the pilots lined up where they should not have been because the taxiway had lights along it. The crew was faulted for not reading all the NOTAMs, one of which mentioned the closed runway, with the NTSB recommendation to somehow fix that.

The main obstacle is that operators are inconsistent in their notation, making parsing by software of the NOTAMs unreliable for every entry, and missing even one can be a problem. In many industries some service would start up offering that translation and fixing errors as they are noted, but the liability for an error could be in the billions of dollars, so where's the upside? If it was easy it would have happened long ago. The legislation is the sort that assumes it is easy but, if so, why the lack of showing their homework towards a solution? I would guess they also want to avoid liability if it goes wrong. Better to pass a law forcing others to take that responsibility.

The FAA adoption of the ICAO schema is to offset some of this by adding a classification to each entry and to create a class of permanent NOTAMS, such as for the poles, but also for birds, and other uncontrolled hazards. This allows sorting into "What's New" and "What's a direct concern," but it doesn't relieve the operators of having to put down poles and birds - whether they are essentially extorted to do so or just don't want to be sued for failing to mention a hazard that may not appear on navigation charts.

My preference is a system similar to the ADSB system with a mandate of ADSB-In for all manned aircraft. Then hazards could be given their own identifiers and their coordinates broadcast from the airports. However the FAA hasn't even wanted to mandate ADSB-Out for purposes of tracking and avoidance for all manned aircraft. Add in some width and length dimensions and obstacles like powerlines can be included.
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Old 28th Jan 2023, 04:24
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MechEngr, I hope you'll consider serving on the H.R. 346 task force . . . . if it passes the Senate, that is.

(Odd coincidence, the number of the House Resolution matches the number of fatalities in the two 737 MAX crashes - which also is the number of fatalities in the 1974 Turkish Airlines 981 DC-10 crash outside Paris.)
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Old 28th Jan 2023, 20:20
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Mech - I can see value for a tech solution to part of the NOTAM system, but not sure how that would play in the changing environment. Example; Some nut does a gear up at my field. First thing I do is call the 888 number for NOTAM and close my runway. Right now, within 10 min or so, the entire aviating world knows that my airport is closed to all traffic. A plane with ADSB-in does not use the NOTAM system and relies on real time ADSB-in info for NOTAMs. Since the ADSB plane did not check NOTAMs on pre-flight they have no idea my runway is fouled. How does the NOTAM report get involved with the ADSB real time report? I can't see a mandate for something like this unless there is a complete overhaul and ADSB shows real time up to date info to the pilot. My experience so far is the FAA can't even do ADSB-out very well yet. How many years ago were we promised full in and out ADSB service? And, where are we today?

Second, suppose I fly a no radio bugsmasher. How am I going to equip with ADSB-in? Or, don't non-radio planes get to fly anymore? Just ground thousands of planes that can't generate electricity? My Luscombe 8E is a hand prop all metal no electric. Right now, I can fly anywhere outside class A and B, and yes still inside the mode-C veil. Take away the AW cert for all these planes? hmmmm
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Old 28th Jan 2023, 23:23
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The ADSB system could be used to monitor all traffic anywhere in the world - that's how sites like Flight 24 work. They aren't used now for NOTAM level activity because they are prohibited from being used that way. It's also sufficiently real time (I think typical updates are less than 60 seconds apart) to track ground vehicles at large airports.

Having checked the NOTAM for your airport prior to departure if you have a wheel's up on the runway after they depart, how does the pilot know about it?

Either ground the antique or put in an electrical system. The GA system kills more people every year than the MAX did, and too large a number of them are from mid-air collisions, including professional and expert operations. ADSB is easy to adapt to track local traffic - costs about $100 in hardware to use a software defined radio and a single-board computer to discover the traffic and a small LCD panel to show proximity and path. No doubt "certified'" systems will cost more because they can. GA pilots also fly into power lines, as recently happened at Gaithersburg. An ADSB broadcast having that as an obstacle would very likely have avoided that problem.

It is a problem that the FAA has been dragging on ADSB - but I think it better to focus on an integrated solution to the majority of problems than spend a similar amount of effort on what is essentially a dead end technology. Improving NOTAM is trying to keep the printing presses running for delivering the newspaper so that readers can check how the market is doing.

What is funny (freaking hilarious) is that the FAA has mandated that all model airplanes and remote control drones transmit an equivalent of ADSB of not only the location of the item, but also the location of the operator. Somehow a model airplane is more regulated for that aspect than manned aircraft are. This in spite of 0 fatalities from hobbyists in at least the last 50 years vs an average of 1 per day in the US for manned GA. However, there is a danger - as demonstrated when a cop set his drone directly into the final approach to an airport, a cop meeting all the FAA operator requirements, including an observer, suggesting that law enforcement not be allowed to operate drones. Best part - that cop was stationed at the airport. No NOTAM for that operation, but had the drone had ADSB-Out and the small plane ADSB-In the collision would likely been avoided. Had the plane had ADSB-Out the cop could have been alerted to the plane coming in or the software in the drone designed to avoid the collision.
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Old 29th Jan 2023, 07:16
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Originally Posted by ATC Watcher
Indeed . But ATC has always been reactive to accidents /incidents. We always have to wait things make the headlines to have things changed. We all know since at least 30 years that we have to modernise the NOTAM system and change things into plain language instead of abbrevaitions and codes made during WW2 when the first NOTAMs had to be sent by Morse code and later by teletypes. In fact it is partially our own collectve fault that we are still acceping this today as a fact of life.
The US Congress might have good initatives, but the FAA cannot do this alone, ICAO would need to be invoved , and the old lady is (very) slow..
Actually, I am not against the abbreviations at all, on the contrary. It makes it much easier to "fast-read", than when ordinary (semi- / own-invention-) English is being used.

What we want to get rid of, are all those CYA NOTAMs. So, some system in place to have a height (and maybe also altitude) relevance, as well as selection (for example) based on the inverted wedding cakes & airspaces, would solve large parts of the current critics.

Not to say, I sincerely hope, the NOTAM system is not "modernized" to reflect a digital world. A digital world, that nicely works, when reliable connections are available, but fails miserable, once that assumption goes below 99%.
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Old 29th Jan 2023, 07:34
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Originally Posted by ethicalconundrum
As an airport manager, I would like to spread some knowledge on how the NOTAM system works(or actually fails to work) from the other side(submitter). Every 15-26 months, a contract inspector comes to my airport, and inspects it for all operational equipment, and anything related to safe operation on the airport, even if we aren't responsible for it. Example, There are two power poles about 400' from the threshold of one runway, and 8 deg off center. Are they a hazard to navigation? Not to me, I know where they are and I know not to make a low and off-center approach. The poles are pretty easily visible, as they have a yellow band at the top. However, each inspection the power poles are noted on my inspection with height, location, and distance from the threshold.

Now, since the inspector makes a report, and notes these poles they have become a 'hazard'. So, I have two choices. I can NOTAM the poles, or I can remark them in the operation notes of the airport master record. In fact, I'm supposed to do both. I didn't have a choice as the inspector will submit the inspection to the FAA, and then it's cast in stone, and I can't do anything about it from a reporting standpoint. I've contacted the utility, and they tell me they will move them, but unless I pay for it, they will do it on their schedule, and I have to wait. These poles are not on my airfield, there's nothing I can do about them myself.

I don't want to NOTAM them as I don't think they are a factor for anyone with more than 8 working brain cells that would make an off-center, very low(65 feet) approach. But - it could happen so not reporting them to the NOTAM people leaves me in the "well, why didn't you report the poles" in case some jackass hits them. I mean, seriously, the poles are only 4 feet from the edge of the road, and yet no driver would hold the city or county or property owner liable if they smashed into them with a car, so WTF about a plane hitting one and blaming me? So, every 6 months, I write an email renewing my NOTAM for the poles. I don't want to do it, and I don't have to do it, but the FAA is going to come along and give me **** about it, unless I have the removed or leave them and publish the NOTAM.

I want to take a chain saw over and do the deed, but there's another liability for me if I do the right thing. Trust me, we have enough paperwork to do without make-work developed by the FAA and their contractors.
What you describe is a real reality.

The issue with this is, that with your road example, there are navigation clues (the tarmac itself, potential white stripes, etc), to give drivers the real-time notification "you should not go there" (something which is lost, with heavy fog and we see the results of that). These restriction clues are missing, once you go 3D (or better 4D, since obstacles can move).

The main problem is, the NOTAM system should have some kind of "extra info" option, so it becomes possible to filter out everything that is not supposed to be on your navigation path. Ok, ok, I know, this is an oversimplification ..... Though, why get reported all those windmills up to 500ft, when the only reason for you to get there would be, when things are already out of control and you already lost the nav plot / opportunity to avoid the windmills anyway ?

Granted, there are / can be situations, when these windmills are relevant to be NOTAM'd. For example, when flying low-level inspections with a chopper. Then, you definitely want to know what obstacles could be there. The same applies, for your just "off-center" poles, when not flying regular navigation patterns.
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Old 29th Jan 2023, 07:53
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Originally Posted by MechEngr
The ADSB system could be used to monitor all traffic anywhere in the world - that's how sites like Flight 24 work. They aren't used now for NOTAM level activity because they are prohibited from being used that way. It's also sufficiently real time (I think typical updates are less than 60 seconds apart) to track ground vehicles at large airports.
Unfortunately, the FR24 are nice for viewing/reviewing, though insufficiently accurate/reliable to run a day2day flight operation on.


Originally Posted by MechEngr
Having checked the NOTAM for your airport prior to departure if you have a wheel's up on the runway after they depart, how does the pilot know about it?
NOTAMs get posted long before you depart (including a timing window these are valid, etc). Those issues / emergency NOTAMS popping up during the flight, you get an ACARS message from the company, or just on approach to the arrival airport, on the ATIS or from the ATC itself.

Originally Posted by MechEngr
Either ground the antique or put in an electrical system. The GA system kills more people every year than the MAX did, and too large a number of them are from mid-air collisions, including professional and expert operations. ADSB is easy to adapt to track local traffic - costs about $100 in hardware to use a software defined radio and a single-board computer to discover the traffic and a small LCD panel to show proximity and path. No doubt "certified'" systems will cost more because they can. GA pilots also fly into power lines, as recently happened at Gaithersburg. An ADSB broadcast having that as an obstacle would very likely have avoided that problem.
When Mode-S was introduced, the airfield ATC's NOTAM'd the Mode-S to be turned off, due to system overloading (solved by now).

The moment you start ADSB-ing obstacles, it would result in a cacophony of ADSB transmitters, cluttering the screens and whatever.

Originally Posted by MechEngr
It is a problem that the FAA has been dragging on ADSB - but I think it better to focus on an integrated solution to the majority of problems than spend a similar amount of effort on what is essentially a dead end technology. Improving NOTAM is trying to keep the printing presses running for delivering the newspaper so that readers can check how the market is doing.
Printed stuff isn't that bad, once it no longer does have a real-time characteristic. I still read a lot of paper magazines, reads much easier than a bulky screen (not to speak about the useless small phone screens to do something serious). Not so say, when taking a bath, the paper magazine dropping into the water is a waste of USD 5, iso USD 200+ for a phone/tablet. Not so say, the vapor damaging the phone/tablet internals. (Water tight is not really water tight against water vapor ......).

Originally Posted by MechEngr
What is funny (freaking hilarious) is that the FAA has mandated that all model airplanes and remote control drones transmit an equivalent of ADSB of not only the location of the item, but also the location of the operator. Somehow a model airplane is more regulated for that aspect than manned aircraft are. This in spite of 0 fatalities from hobbyists in at least the last 50 years vs an average of 1 per day in the US for manned GA. However, there is a danger - as demonstrated when a cop set his drone directly into the final approach to an airport, a cop meeting all the FAA operator requirements, including an observer, suggesting that law enforcement not be allowed to operate drones. Best part - that cop was stationed at the airport. No NOTAM for that operation, but had the drone had ADSB-Out and the small plane ADSB-In the collision would likely been avoided. Had the plane had ADSB-Out the cop could have been alerted to the plane coming in or the software in the drone designed to avoid the collision.
The issue with model airplanes / drones is, the operator is not on board, with the consequence of a significant difference in personal importance "where the flying object goes", whereas the flying object can severely impact/damage third parties. Not so speak about potential bad-intentions, significantly more difficult to realize undetected with a GA airplane.
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