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Author Topic: Radar service is down due to repairs  (Read 2545 times)
Jonathan_tcu
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« on: August 11, 2005, 06:43:52 AM »

Here's a question for other people who monitor ATC in other non-radar environments.  If ATC normally approves a visual approach and asks the pilot to call the field in sight, can ATC still approve this approach if the pilot is flying into a temporary non-radar environment?  I'm mentioning this because the ramp radar site at North Bay for the Sudbury/North Bay sectors is down for repairs after Tuesday night's sever weather.
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FSS wannabe, just curious about stuff, that's all.
dave
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« Reply #1 on: August 11, 2005, 12:23:34 PM »

I'm not sure what the rules are in Canada but here in the U.S. the pilot has to have the field in sight, the runway in sight, or a succeeding aircraft that is also landing at the field in sight, *before* being issued a visual approach clearance.  If there is a preceding aircraft for the approach and the pilot in the succeeding aircraft does not have it in sight, but has the field in sight, then radar separation needs to be provided until the #2 aircraft has the #1 aircraft in sight and can maintain visual separation.  Again, this is in the U.S.  Canadian rules may differ somewhat.

As to the other part of your question, I don't know all the radar sites involved, but the loss of one radar site does not necessarily mean that there is no radar coverage at all.  It could be that there is still coverage, but it might be degraded or spotty.  But if there is no coverage, I believe the aircraft can still be cleared for the visual approach, but radar service will be terminated once there is no radar coverage.  In that case, the pilot will be responsible for separation from that point on until landing, unless there is a control tower operating.  In that case, the tower would provide separation.

Hope this helps.

Dave
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KSYR-pjr
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« Reply #2 on: August 16, 2005, 06:50:34 PM »

Quote from: Jonathan_tcu
If ATC normally approves a visual approach and asks the pilot to call the field in sight, can ATC still approve this approach if the pilot is flying into a temporary non-radar environment?


I flew into Canada's Toronto City Centre airport once under IFR and I recall that the controller could not give me a visual approach or even say that I could expect it, despite the conditions being about 5 miles in haze.   He hinted that my only option was either to request a contact approach that far out or he would have to put me on the localizer.  I requested the contact approach (remain clear of clouds in weather that was at least one mile visibility with the surface in sight).  

In the US, ATC will often say, "expect the visual approach" even if the aircraft is currently in instrument conditions (assuming the field conditions allow a visual approach), but ATC cannot clear an aircraft for the visual until the pilot calls out either airport and/or preceding aircraft in sight, as Dave indicated.
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Regards, Peter
ATC Feed:  Syracuse (KSYR), NY
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« Reply #3 on: August 16, 2005, 08:47:58 PM »

Quote from: KSYR-pjr

I flew into Canada's Toronto City Centre airport once under IFR and I recall that the controller could not give me a visual approach or even say that I could expect it, despite the conditions being about 5 miles in haze.   He hinted that my only option was either to request a contact approach that far out or he would have to put me on the localizer.


In the US, a controller cannot even initiate a vector for a visual approach unless the reported ceiling at the airport of intended landing is at least 500 feet above the MVA (minimum vectoring altitude).  In addition to that, the controller cannot clear an aircraft for a visual approach unless the field is VFR (in the case of a satellite airport like YTZ), even if the runway or airport is reported in sight by the pilot.
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JD
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