The FAA today issued an emergency order prohibiting “all flight operations in the territory and airspace of Venezuela at altitudes below FL260.” The Notam applies to U.S. air carriers, commercial operators, and “all persons exercising the privileges of an airman certificate issued by the FAA,” except for pilots flying foreign-registered aircraft or foreign air carriers operating U.S.-registered aircraft.
Venezuela is experiencing serious disruptions, with battles between pro- and anti-government forces as President Nicolas Maduro attempts to retain control while opposition leader Juan Guaidó seeks support for his claim to leadership of the country.
The Notam allows the above to conduct flight operations if authorized by other U.S. government agencies with FAA approval or under an FAA deviation, exemption, or other authorization. Pilots are allowed to deviate as necessary in case of an emergency that “requires immediate decision and action for the safety of the flight,” according to the FAA.
Before the FAA issued its emergency order, OpsGroup’s Airport Spy had been recommending that members, especially those flying U.S.-registered aircraft, avoid Venezuela.