Due to an increasing number of runway incursions two decades ago, such as the February 1991 nighttime collision between a USAir Boeing 737 and a Skywest Metroliner at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), the FAA severely restricted the number of airport control towers authorized to allow a departing aircraft to sit on the runway for any length of time. While safer, the procedure also reduces total traffic flow.
One of the airports not allowed to use the procedure, now called “Line up and wait” (LUAW), was Orlando Executive Airport (ORL). As of July 1, that restriction will disappear, just in time to offer controllers a few months of hands-on practice using the new procedure prior to October’s NBAA convention. ORL will be the host airport for the NBAA static aircraft display.
The true value of LUAW is the extra flexibility it offers controllers when determining how much runway distance is necessary between aircraft to ensure adequate safety margins. With LUAW, tower controllers may taxi a departing aircraft on to the runway as soon as a previous landing has passed by, or immediately after another departure has begun its takeoff roll.
Bob Lamond, NBAA’s director, air traffic services and infrastructure, said “NBAA thanks the staff at Orlando Executive for making this change, which will benefit the airport and pilots throughout the year.”