IFR

ATC’s Expect to Cross an Intersection

I was sitting on the jumpseat in the cockpit of another airline yesterday and I heard a radio exchange between ATC and the pilot working the radio for the crew. It sounded like this. (The aircraft call sign, altitudes and the named intersection are fictitious.) ATC: “Airliner 167, at pilot’s discretion, descend and maintain Flight …

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The Difference Between ATC Clearances and Advisories

The following transmission from a tower controller has a clearance and an advisory. Can you tell which is which? ATC says, “Skyhawk 9130 Delta, Runway 16, line up and wait. Traffic will be crossing downfield.” When the controller said, “Runway 16, line up and wait,” he was directing Skyhawk 9130 Delta to do something. When …

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Flying an Approach Into an Uncontrolled Pattern

You are flying an ILS approach into an uncontrolled pattern. The weather in the pattern permits VFR. There are other pilots buzzing around the airport. As you change from ATC’s frequency to the airport’s common traffic advisory frequency, what are you thinking about? Completing that ILS? Sure. If you are like me, you are thinking …

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Learning Radio Phrasing By Experience is Highly Risky

Experience means jack if you aren’t open to learning something new from your experiences. Fair warning, learning by experience without distinguishing good from bad can lead you to very dark and dangerous places. Nowhere is this more true than in an aircraft cockpit. Let me explain. I’ve been flying fixed wing airplanes since I was …

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Experience on the Radio Can Be the Worst Teacher

Experience means jack if you aren’t open to learning something new from your experiences. Fair warning, learning by experience without distinguishing good from bad can lead you to very dark and dangerous places. Nowhere is this more true than in an aircraft cockpit. Let me explain. I’ve been flying fixed wing airplanes since I was …

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Coming Up in the Next IFR Flight Radio

In your next edition of the IFR Flight Radio Show we’ll talk about picking up an IFR clearance while airborne. Also, what ATC means by “climb unrestricted”. And, all about clearances for a cruise descent. Plus a new question to ponder. In the meantime, here’s a good read. My friend and highly experienced pilot, Sarah …

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Cannot Comply with an ATC Clearance: Unable

When you cannot comply with an ATC clearance, the magic word to use is “unable”. Simply saying “unable”, and nothing else, might not get you completely off the hook with ATC. I’ll explain why, and what to do about in this month’s edition of IFR Flight Radio. Show Resources From the Aeronautical Information Manual’s Pilot/Controller …

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