Starting May 1, the Isle of Man–a British Crown Dependency located in the Irish Sea between the UK and Ireland–will have its own aircraft registry, open only to corporate and private aircraft. The UK government recently notified ICAO that it is allowing the Isle of Man to use the previously idle “M” tail number registration that was allocated to the UK in 1919.
The days might soon be over for the basing of non-UK-registered general aviation aircraft in the UK. The country’s Department for Transportation (DFT) is considering a plan to prohibit non-commercial foreign-registered aircraft from being permanently based in Britain. A comment period on the plan is expected shortly.
Effective September 1, operators will be required to use a new set of flight plan aircraft equipment suffixes to indicate advanced navigation capabilities. According to an FAA notice published last week, either J, K, L or a newly defined Q is to be used to specify advanced RNAV and RVSM capabilities. Pilots should continue to use a W to indicate RVSM capability only.
A 757 crew did not get the response they expected when they declared an “emergency” instead of “mayday.” According to an incident filed with NASA’s Aviation Safety Reporting System, the crew found that the word “emergency” didn’t get the desired results outside U.S. airspace. The crew diverted to an airport in South America and declared an emergency, but the non-English-speaking controllers didn’t recognize what that meant.
The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) is inviting European operators to comment on its proposed operations and licensing regulations. Alexandria, Va.-based Helicopter Association International has posted a series of 15 questions on its Web site (www.rotor.com), and will coordinate operator feedback with the International Federation of Helicopter Associations (IFHA) and European Helicopter Association.
If asked today for their views about automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast (ADS-B), many pilots might respond that it was developed to meet the unique needs of single-engine commercial operators in remote areas such as Alaska, where only minimal ATC services were available. Alternatively, it was aimed at helping freighter pilots best position themselves in inbound traffic streams during “rush hour” operations around freight hubs.
A handful of business aircraft operators have started transmitting flight-intent data to the FAA’s ATC System Command Center in Herndon, Va. Fractional-share operator Bombardier Flexjet was the first nonscheduled operator to sign up for the program and six more (a mix of charter operators and corporate flight departments) will join soon, according to Joanne Damato, manager for NBAA’s GA Desk at the command center.
Those who operate N-registered business aircraft in Europe know how well off we are in the U.S. Aside from a multitude of flight information regions under the jurisdiction of different countries, Eurocontrol charges and airport restrictions, there is simply a different attitude toward business aviation in Europe compared with the U.S.
Starting on June 1, the FAA will no longer accept aircraft registration applications (AC Form 8050-1) that do not contain the printed or typed name of the signer in the signature block. The application form already asks for the typed or printed name below the signature, but the agency has previously not rejected applications solely on this omission.
Nav Canada last month awarded its national ADS-B program to Syracuse, N.Y.-based Sensis, and installation of the first system ground stations is now under way. The FAA, on the other hand, faces some unexpected pre-contract issues as it moves toward its implementation plan.