AOPA to Pilots: Be Careful!

 - April 28, 2008, 10:02 AM

Two high-profile violations of the capital’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ) have prompted the AOPA Air Safety Foundation (ASF) to send bright orange warning posters and information on ADIZ requirements and operating procedures to more than 1,300 flight schools and FBOs within 400 miles of Washington, D.C. The posters, which are heavily laminated, can be displayed on desks, doors and the sides of fuel trucks.
On March 5, the pilot of a King Air flying inside the ADIZ cancelled IFR at 14,500 feet, presumably thinking he was clear of restricted airspace, which actually extends up to 18,000 feet. On March 12, the pilot of a Cessna Cardinal RG caused two F-16s and a Coast Guard helicopter to scramble after the aircraft came within six miles of downtown Washington. The threat level in the city was briefly raised from yellow to orange and personnel at the U.S. Capitol were ordered to prepare to evacuate.