Flight Training - October 2013 - 38

ANY PILOT WHO PUTS SITUATIONAL AWARENESS HIGH UP ON
HIS OR HER PRIORITY LIST WILL AUTOMATICALLY BE A SAFER
AND MORE AWARE PILOT.
You will notice that it doesn’t say a
runway incursion presents unavoidable
danger, or that it specifically involves two
or more aircraft. A runway incursion can
involve two or more aircraft, or it might
involve an aircraft and a fuel truck, or perhaps a golf cart or even just a pedestrian in
a particular place, at a time when it should
not be there.
As pilots it is up to us to be on the
defense, remain aware of our surroundings, and use communication tools to our
best advantage. If we do, we can prevent
many runway incursions that might otherwise have created a safety issue.
Runway incursions are broken down
into four categories. Category D is
reserved for situations where a vehicle,
person, or aircraft is incorrectly present on the protected area of a runway, or
other place designated for landing and
taking off, but without an immediate
safety consequence.
Category C is for incidents where there
is adequate time and space available to
avoid a collision. Category B describes an
incident with a significant potential for
collision and which may require quick
corrective or evasive action to avoid a collision. In Category A—the most serious—a
collision was narrowly avoided.
The escalation of categories continues,
of course. Beyond a Category A runway
incursion is an event that results in a collision. That occurrence is officially defined
as an accident.
WHERE DID HE COME FROM? A CFI who
would prefer to remain nameless related
this story. “I was with a presolo student
at a nontowered airport, and we’d just
made our takeoff call [on the CTAF]. As
we accelerated down the runway, another
airplane crossed the active runway on the
taxiway that intersects the runway at midfield.” This is an example of a Category C
incursion.
As the various categories suggest, the
severity of a runway incursion is based
on several variables: available reaction
38 /

FLIGHTTRAINING.AOPA.ORG

ASRS
The Aviation Safety Reporting System
offers pilots who are involved in or

your transmission stepped on and made
incomprehensible by another pilot who
was a little too quick with the transmit
button.

witness an incident where safety has
been compromised the ability to file a
report detailing the circumstances of
the occurrence. Reports filed with the
ASRS are confidential. The FAA does
not use the information filed in ASRS
reports in enforcement actions. In fact,
the agency has been known to waive
fines and penalties for pilots who have
participated in the process. Filing an
ASRS report provides a valuable tool
that can be used in conjunction with
other information to enhance aviation
safety, even as the offending pilot may
benefit from the potential of a waived
penalty. See the website for more
information (http://asrs.arc.nasa.gov/).

time, the need for evasive or corrective
action, environmental conditions, the
speed of the aircraft or other vehicle,
and the proximity of the aircraft or other
vehicle to each other. Each of those factors is evaluated to arrive at an accurate
determination of how serious a runway
incursion was.
Our goal is to avoid runway incursions
entirely. And although none of us can
guarantee we never will be involved in a
runway incursion, we can take steps to
ensure we are not the offending aircraft,
should one occur.
Researchers have identified three major
contributors to runway incursion events:
• Failure to comply with instructions
from air traffic control.
• Lack of familiarity with the airport.
• Not following standard operating
procedures.
The good news is that all three of those
causes are easily preventable. If ATC
issues you an instruction you don’t hear
clearly, or don’t understand, ask them to
repeat it. You will not be the first—or the
last—to have missed a radio call, or to have

CONFUSION ON THE TAXIWAY. It is night at
a busy southern airport. Visibility is good.
The first officer of a Canadair Regional
Jet is issued a taxi clearance that allowed
the flight to cross a taxiway that paralleled the active runway, then hold short
of the runway until further clearance is
given. The captain is taxiing the airplane.
As they approach the parallel taxiway, the
first officer warns the captain to stop. She
sees something wrong on the taxiway. The
captain assures her they have been cleared
to cross the taxiway. The first officer
agrees, but still sees something amiss on
the taxiway. They stop short of the parallel taxiway and consider calling ground
control for an advisory. Seconds later a
Cessna Citation rotates directly in front of
the RJ—taking off from the taxiway the RJ
had been cleared to cross.
“We were in disbelief,” said the captain
years later, relating the story. “The tower
couldn’t see exactly what was going on.
They could see us better than the airplane
that was taking off.” Had the first officer
not spoken up, the outcome would have
been tragic.
Although this particular example
may not meet the letter of the incursion
definition, it certainly meets the spirit of a
Category B incursion.
When you’re at an unfamiliar airport,
use an airport diagram to find your
way from Point A to Point B, or ask for
progressive taxi instructions. ATC will be
happy to guide you, step by step, to your
destination. They would much rather
help you than suffer the consequences of
having a lost aircraft taxi onto a runway.
So don’t be shy. When you need an assist,
say so. That’s part of the reason ATC is
there in the first place.
As a rule, be sure you follow the standard operating procedures for ground
operations. When the tower clears you to


http://asrs.arc.nasa.gov/ http://FLIGHTTRAINING.AOPA.ORG

Flight Training - October 2013

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Flight Training - October 2013

Flight Training - October 2013
Contents
Member Benefits
Right Seat
Centerline
Letters
Night Flight
Success Story Flight Training Excellence Award Winner
How It Works
After the Checkride
AOPA Action
News From Airventure 2013
ASI News
Tech Tip
Final Exam
Flight Lesson
Flying Carpet
The Oops List
One Pilot, Many Tools
Stop, Look, Listen
Technique
Weather
Accident Report
Fuel Management
Career Advisor
Tech Talk
Familiarity Breeds Good Training
Perceptual Magic
Advertiser Index
Debrief
Flight Training - October 2013 - Flight Training - October 2013
Flight Training - October 2013 - Cover2
Flight Training - October 2013 - Contents
Flight Training - October 2013 - 2
Flight Training - October 2013 - 3
Flight Training - October 2013 - Member Benefits
Flight Training - October 2013 - 5
Flight Training - October 2013 - Right Seat
Flight Training - October 2013 - 7
Flight Training - October 2013 - Centerline
Flight Training - October 2013 - 9
Flight Training - October 2013 - Letters
Flight Training - October 2013 - 11
Flight Training - October 2013 - Night Flight
Flight Training - October 2013 - 13
Flight Training - October 2013 - Success Story Flight Training Excellence Award Winner
Flight Training - October 2013 - How It Works
Flight Training - October 2013 - After the Checkride
Flight Training - October 2013 - AOPA Action
Flight Training - October 2013 - News From Airventure 2013
Flight Training - October 2013 - 19
Flight Training - October 2013 - ASI News
Flight Training - October 2013 - Tech Tip
Flight Training - October 2013 - Final Exam
Flight Training - October 2013 - Flight Lesson
Flight Training - October 2013 - Flying Carpet
Flight Training - October 2013 - 25
Flight Training - October 2013 - The Oops List
Flight Training - October 2013 - 27
Flight Training - October 2013 - 28
Flight Training - October 2013 - 29
Flight Training - October 2013 - 30
Flight Training - October 2013 - 31
Flight Training - October 2013 - One Pilot, Many Tools
Flight Training - October 2013 - 33
Flight Training - October 2013 - 34
Flight Training - October 2013 - 35
Flight Training - October 2013 - Stop, Look, Listen
Flight Training - October 2013 - 37
Flight Training - October 2013 - 38
Flight Training - October 2013 - 39
Flight Training - October 2013 - Technique
Flight Training - October 2013 - 41
Flight Training - October 2013 - Weather
Flight Training - October 2013 - 43
Flight Training - October 2013 - Accident Report
Flight Training - October 2013 - Fuel Management
Flight Training - October 2013 - Career Advisor
Flight Training - October 2013 - 47
Flight Training - October 2013 - Tech Talk
Flight Training - October 2013 - Familiarity Breeds Good Training
Flight Training - October 2013 - 50
Flight Training - October 2013 - Perceptual Magic
Flight Training - October 2013 - Advertiser Index
Flight Training - October 2013 - 53
Flight Training - October 2013 - 54
Flight Training - October 2013 - 55
Flight Training - October 2013 - Debrief
Flight Training - October 2013 - Cover3
Flight Training - October 2013 - Cover4
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