AVSIG: Class E Airspace Question wwswsigarch.jpg (7236 bytes)

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AVSIG Discussion Sections >> Air Traffic Control

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Scott Dunham (RDU)
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Reged: 04/29/04
Posts: 6470
Loc: Chapel Hill, NC
Re: Class E Airspace Question [Re: Denny Cunningham]
      #439947 - 06/26/17 07:29 AM

The charted extensions at ALW are marked by red dashed lines, which according to the VFR chart legend denote class E to the surface, with the area nearby being red-shaded border indicating a 700-foot floor of controlled airspace. I assume the airport in question is Page (9W2), which is inside the red-dashed area so looks to be class E to the surface. If it really started at 700 agl, the red dashed lines would be superfluous because they're inside the red shaded area. Are they saying that the charting is wrong?

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Scott Dyer [HPN/NY]
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Reged: 01/11/03
Posts: 20065
Re: Class E Airspace Question [Re: Denny Cunningham]
      #439951 - 06/26/17 10:00 AM

Denny -- I certainly didn't see that distinction coming!

--------------------
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Andy Alson (HPN/NY)
THE TOP GUN!


Reged: 08/31/01
Posts: 1862
Re: Class E Airspace Question [Re: Scott Dunham (RDU)]
      #439960 - 06/26/17 12:18 PM

I agree with Scott that the magenta (or red?) dashed lines indicate class E down to the surface. If the airport is either Weller Canyon (my guess) or Page (which doesn't show as a private airport) it is not in the Class D at all, which would mean that the towered airport has no control over that airspace at all. The tower only has control over the Class D airspace associated with the airport and can't issue any clearance outside that airspace since all the Class E airspace does is create different weather minimums for VFR flight than in the nearby Class G airspace.

The discussion of different types of Class E airspace is irrelevent since the tower only has control over Class D airspace.

If the pilot meets the VFR requirements for Class E airspace he should be good to go no matter what the weather is in the Class D airspace nearby.

If the FAA wants the tower to have control over the extensions they need to chart it with blue dashed lines denoting the Class D airspace and tower control rather than with the magenta lines that only denote different weather minimums.

At least that's what it looks like to me.

Andy


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Andy Alson (HPN/NY)
THE TOP GUN!


Reged: 08/31/01
Posts: 1862
Re: Class E Airspace Question [Re: Andy Alson (HPN/NY)]
      #439962 - 06/26/17 12:36 PM

Looking back in the thread I see that the situation under discussion occurred when the tower was closed, sorry. But that shouldn't change the end result. He's flying in Class E airspace and if he can maintain VFR weather minimums he shouldn't need any type of IFR or SVFR clearance. Here's he not even in what would have been the Class D if the tower was operating so it's very clear. I maintain it should be the same even if he's in the part of the Class E that would have been D if the tower was operating. If that's not what the FAA has in mind probably need to change some of the language in the FARs.

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Denny Cunningham
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Reged: 09/01/01
Posts: 915
Loc: Gold Canyon, AZ
Re: Class E Airspace Question [Re: Scott Dunham (RDU)]
      #439972 - 06/26/17 02:19 PM

Quote:

Are they saying that the charting is wrong?




He didn't say that specifically, but if even the chartmakers don't understand the nuances of the various Class E designations, that's another part of the awareness problem that they need to address.


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Denny Cunningham
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Reged: 09/01/01
Posts: 915
Loc: Gold Canyon, AZ
Re: Class E Airspace Question [Re: Andy Alson (HPN/NY)]
      #439974 - 06/26/17 02:34 PM

Quote:

If that's not what the FAA has in mind probably need to change some of the language in the FARs.




My understanding was pretty much the same as yours-- but apparently, it's NOT what they have in mind, which is why the FAA assigned a contractor to review the topic. He indicated we'd probably be seeing some changes to the 7110.65, AIM, etc.; maybe FAR's will be affected as well, I dunno.


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Denny Cunningham
Top Gun


Reged: 09/01/01
Posts: 915
Loc: Gold Canyon, AZ
Re: Class E Airspace Question [Re: Scott Dyer [HPN/NY]]
      #439975 - 06/26/17 02:38 PM

Quote:

Denny -- I certainly didn't see that distinction coming!




Yeah, me neither-- when he started out with, "Are you familiar with the E1 through E6 designations?", I knew I was in trouble!


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Scott Dunham (RDU)
Top Gun


Reged: 04/29/04
Posts: 6470
Loc: Chapel Hill, NC
Re: Class E Airspace Question [Re: Denny Cunningham]
      #439976 - 06/26/17 02:41 PM

I'm in the UK until Friday and doing this on a phone, so somewhat limited in my research ability (and unable to dredge up the original airspace action...), but if that extension is not supposed to go to the surface it really doesn't need to be charted at all - the whole area is already 700 AGL.

Homework to follow...


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Ray Tackett
Top Gun


Reged: 04/30/04
Posts: 8892
Loc: Philadelphia, USA
Class E Airspace Question [Re: Denny Cunningham]
      #439977 - 06/26/17 03:21 PM

... even if the chartmakers don't understand the nuances ...

Might well be the case. Years ago, I reported a couple of errors on the NY
sectional. I had an excellent conversation with the cartographer who phoned
me, and he got the problems corected. However, he was an expert
cartographer, not a pilot, a controller, or an airspace specialist.

--------------------
Ray,

Owner, Lake Wood Be Gone

Turning quality lumber into sawdust and noise since 2013.


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Denny Cunningham
Top Gun


Reged: 09/01/01
Posts: 915
Loc: Gold Canyon, AZ
Re: Class E Airspace Question [Re: Ray Tackett]
      #439981 - 06/26/17 04:33 PM

I may be compounding the confusion by the terminology I've used in this thread: the AIM section on Class E (3-2-9) differentiates between "Extension to a surface area" and "Airspace used for transition". I've been loosely using the term "extension", but the area they're talking about is (I think) more accurately described as "transition". I did learn the difference 49 years ago, but apparently it slipped my mind after the change to alphabet airspace....

Regardless, I just don't see evidence anywhere in the AIM section regarding Class E that supports the idea that a pilot operating VFR in Class E has even a communications requirement, let alone a clearance requirement.

For instance, the section on "extensions" specifically says: "The extensions provide controlled airspace to contain standard instrument approach procedures without imposing a communications requirement on pilots operating under VFR." Those extensions are considered part of the surface area-- it would seem that, since communications aren't required there for VFR flights, they wouldn't be required in the transition areas, either.



Edited by Denny Cunningham (06/26/17 04:44 PM)


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