D.C. Flight Restrictions Might Be Permanent
The FAA proposed today to make permanent the so-called temporary flight restrictions in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area. The restrictions and the current air defense identification zone (ADIZ) would be known as the National Defense Airspace. The Washington ADIZ and another over New York City were established in February 2002, ostensibly as temporary measures, and the New York City ADIZ has since been eliminated. NBAA president and CEO Ed Bolen said, “While we don’t know all the details yet, we are concerned about any proposal to permanently restrict aircraft access to airports and airspace, and we will be looking at the proposal with an eye toward its impact on security, economic activity and basic freedom of mobility.” AOPA said it “recognizes the necessity to protect the national assets in the nation’s capital,” but opposes the proposal. “The 15-nautical-mile-radius no-fly area known as the flight-restricted zone (FRZ) does that,” said AOPA president Phil Boyer. “But we take strong exception with the FAA’s proposal to make the temporary outer ring of Washington’s defensive airspace permanent.” Comments on the proposal are due November 2.