IFR

Enroute ATC: How to Request Direct to a Point

Cutting a corner by requesting direct to a point further along your route of flight could save time and fuel. An enroute air traffic controller will try to honor your request if circumstances permit. First and foremost it pays to know how to make a request direct to a point. We’ll discuss all the particulars …

Enroute ATC: How to Request Direct to a Point Read More »

Enroute ATC: Traffic and Radar Handoffs

If your IFR training was like mine, you spent a lot of time taking radar vectors to instrument approaches using approach control service. Less time was spent working with enroute center controllers. Communicating with an enroute controller at an air route traffic control center (ARTCC) is its own special skill. In today’s show, we’ll look …

Enroute ATC: Traffic and Radar Handoffs Read More »

Yes, You’re IFR, But Keep Clearing for Traffic

Yes, I know you’re IFR. Yes, I know ATC has you covered with traffic advisories and alerts. Yes, I know you have TCAS or ADS-B In. When you’re in VMC, keep clearing for traffic. You wouldn’t believe what can pop up as unannounced traffic, in the most unexpected place. I wrote about a surprise encounter …

Yes, You’re IFR, But Keep Clearing for Traffic Read More »

Look Out for VFR Pop-Up Traffic

Explain this to me. I was on the cockpit jumpseat as we were descending into San Francisco International yesterday. Inflight visibility was good, though the sun was blinding as it sank towards the western horizon. Suddenly, Norcal Approach said, “Airliner 521 Heavy*, expedite a right turn, heading 280.” The Pilot Flying complied. A second and …

Look Out for VFR Pop-Up Traffic Read More »

St. Maarten Tower, You’re Driving Me Crazy!

It happened again this week. I bring it up so you’ll know you are not alone with this problem. This was at St. Maarten International–yes, that St. Maarten. The place where everyone hangs onto the fence, and their swim shorts, as the KLM 747 comes screaming overhead at 50 feet. “Didja get it? Didja get the …

St. Maarten Tower, You’re Driving Me Crazy! Read More »

Airspeed Readback to ATC

Tampa Approach Control: “Cessna 30D, maintain 130 knots.” How would you read back that clearance? Here’s what the AIM says: 4−4−7. Pilot Responsibility upon Clearance Issuance b. ATC Clearance/Instruction Readback. Pilots of airborne aircraft should read back those parts of ATC clearances and instructions containing altitude assignments, vectors, or runway assignments as a means of …

Airspeed Readback to ATC Read More »

Reading Back a Final Approach Clearance

When giving you final instructions to intercept an instrument approach, an air traffic controller uses a very specific format. This format is: Position Turn Altitude Clearance to fly the specific approach Thank goodness this forms an acronym. We can’t fly without a proper acronym. PTAC, pronounced “Pee tack”, gladdens our aviator’s heart. Let’s look at …

Reading Back a Final Approach Clearance Read More »

Scroll to Top