Aircraft Radio Call Anatomy 102

Flight training school is back in session, and this class is Aircraft Radio Call Anatomy 102. In our first class, we dissected a radio call and looked at its structure. We said the major components of a radio call are:

  1. Your aircraft call sign.
  2. Your location.
  3. Your intentions.
  4. (Optionally) remarks.

Today, let’s focus on the importance of using your aircraft call sign in every radio transmission.



Here is what the Airman’s Information Manual has to say on the subject:

Section 2. Radio Communications Phraseology and Techniques

4_2_1. General

b. The single, most important thought in pilot-controller communications is understanding. It is essential, therefore, that pilots acknowledge each radio communication with ATC by using the appropriate aircraft call sign.

The AIM is clear about the requirement to use your call sign in each and every transmission. Why? To avoid confusion. Here is the Federal Aviation Regulation (FAR) on the matter:

Sec. 91.123 — Compliance with ATC clearances and instructions.

(e) Unless otherwise authorized by ATC, no person operating an aircraft may operate that aircraft according to any clearance or instruction that has been issued to the pilot of another aircraft for radar air traffic control purposes.

What’s this reg doing in here? Why would anyone intentionally steal another person’s ATC clearance? They wouldn’t—intentionally. But I’ll show you how it can happen anyway in tomorrow’s class.

*This radio conversation is entirely fictional and was created for training purposes. Any resemblance to actual people or aircraft is entirely coincidental.

{ 0 comments… add one now }

Leave a Comment

{ 1 trackback }

Previous post:

Next post: