1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

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4hrstovegas
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1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by 4hrstovegas »

Interesting events this past week involving this 1/2 taxi rule. I know it's been discussed in another thread, but this is more to highlight the point that very few people seem to know what's going on.

I was about 20 miles from my destination when vis dropped unexpectedly to 3/8. I was planning an ILS (200/ 1/2). According to my understanding of AC300-003, the vis would get me past the approach ban, but the timing of this report would not allow me to taxi in (report issued before the FAF, not fluctuating, no airport/taxi route visible). I asked for confirmation from FSS (after all, it's they who would be writing me up), who first said that another airline had done the same a few weeks earlier with no repurcussions. Hmmm. Then 5 minutes later they came back and said that in fact I would not be able to even conduct an approach and would be written up if I did. Double hmmm. Then they came back and said we were OK because the shift manager said the 1/2 mile rule didn't apply to them (but they are NOT certified for LVOP or RVOP). We opted to hold and wait out the weather, and decided to chat with Centre to get there confirmation (northern sector, pretty quiet). The controller was honest and said he wasn't sure, and would check with his sector manager (this was very nice, because they don't really deal with this sort of thing). Apparently this sparked a big debate over there, and he came back saying that they didn't think we could taxi, but that nobody was really sure (this is an airport issue). I ended up choosing my ass over crappy vis and a lot of confusion and went to my alternate.

The point here is that if NOBODY is really on the same page on this, how the hell are we supposed to make a decision in IMC with pax onboard and not get written up or fired?? One airport will do one thing, another will do something else. One company turns around, while another delivers its payload. This whole thing started because TC wanted airports to upgrade their ground equipment. This backwards legislation has had no real effect on improving airports, and (as usual) has only left pilots with their butts hanging out.

End rant. Thoughts?
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by ODA »

I find it absolutely ridicules that something we have been doing for years is now deemed unsafe because some airports haven't done the paperwork to allow us to taxi in with less than 1/2 mile!
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by Brantford Beech Boy »

4hrstovegas wrote:the vis would get me past the approach ban, but the timing of this report would not allow me to taxi in (report issued before the FAF, not fluctuating, no airport/taxi route visible).
Not sure about AC300-003 but CAR 602.96 (and page 11 of the current CAP GEN)
(2) Where the visibility is less than the minimum visibility set out in subsection (1), no person shall taxi unless:
(b)The aircraft is taxiing after conducting a landing


Sooooo, if the viz is good enough to "get you past the approach ban", then you are nice a legal to land and taxi in.

*sigh*
The rule is pretty straight forward in the CAP GEN (without comment as to why we have the rules) if you take 5 seconds to read it. (IMHO)

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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by Check Pilot »

Unfortunately runway incursions in low visibility are more common than assumed by many, so those operations have not been conducted safely for years.

Taken from the following link:

http://virtualskies.arc.nasa.gov/resear ... vlaso.html


"Low Visibility Landing and Surface Operations (LVLASO)

The rate of hazardous runway incursions is increasing.

Hazardous runway incursions have increased by more than 50 percent over the last several years and five fatal airport surface accidents have occurred since 1990. In 2000, reports of surface incidents averaged more than one a day. Reduced visibility was given as a contributing factor in many of these accidents and incidents."
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by BTD »

I don't have a current CAP gen on me, but if you look in the most recent ones about the taxi rule it states that:

If you do not have the vis to taxi once you land, you cannot complete the approach beyond the FAF unless you are already past the FAF.

Effectively the 1/2 mile becomes your new approach ban. Unless the airport is certified LVOP/RVOP.

4hrstovegas:

In the scenerio you stated if you are outside the FAF and the vis is 3/8s and the airport does not have LVOP/RVOP, as per the cap gen, you cannot initiate the approach because you know you cannot taxi when you land. Whether the fss chooses to write you up or knows enough about it to write you up, who knows. But you made the correct decision as far as the GEN is concerned.
Not sure about AC300-003 but CAR 602.96 (and page 11 of the current CAP GEN)
(2) Where the visibility is less than the minimum visibility set out in subsection (1), no person shall taxi unless:
(b)The aircraft is taxiing after conducting a landing
This rule is only added so that aircraft that are beyond the FAF when the vis drops are not prevented from taxiing after landing. The other part of the cap gen states as I wrote above.


BTD

Editted to add
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by BTD »

It is not as clearly worded here as it is in the Cap Gen, but anyway:

5. Where the observed visibility as set out in paragraphs 4.2 (3)(a) and (b) of this AC, is less than the minimum visibility published in the CFS, an aircraft landing shall be deemed to occur below the published aerodrome operating visibility, except where:


(a) at the time a visibility report is received, the aircraft has passed the Final Approach Fix (FAF) inbound or, where there is no FAF, the point where the final approach course is intercepted;
Basically it says that you can only continue the approach to land if the vis drops below the taxi requirement after you pass the FAF. There are a few b,c,d etc but this is the one that is relevant.

BTD

Thought I should add in what 4.2 (3)(a) and (b) are:
A.
where the aerodrome does not have published procedures for taxi, take-off and landing operations in conditions of reduced or low visibility, any RVR located on the aerodrome, the ground visibility, or the visibility as determined by the PIC is less than any of that aerodrome's operating visibility restrictions published in the CFS; or

B.
where the aerodrome has published procedures for taxi, take-off and landing operations pertaining to the runway of the intended operation in conditions of reduced or low visibility, any RVR or the runway visibility serving that runway, the ground visibility, or the visibility as determined by the PIC is less than the aerodrome's operating visibility restriction published in the CFS for that runway.
http://www.tc.gc.ca/civilaviation/manag ... 3.htm#s4-0
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by AMM »

Speaking of runway incursions in low vis:
viewtopic.php?f=54&t=38755&hilit=http%3 ... BvgSS6kBdU

:smt023 to USAir 2998
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by CCR »

TC is confused, airports are confused, NAV CAN is confused, airline OPS managers are confused, Pilots are confused! Anyone else?

If you conducting a CAT II approach i.e Rwy 23 CYHZ, and it is RVR A 1200 and RVR B 1200, as long as there is a RVOP and/or LVOP in place you can continue the approach past the FAF. However, if for some reason, the RVOP/LVOP are revoked prior to landing, the airport level of service returns to 1/2 mile and therefore one cannot continue the approach. If the RVOP/LVOP plan is revoked once on the ground you are good to taxi in. In this case, the Taxi "Ban" trumps the Approach Ban. :shock:
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by Cat Driver »

You guys missed the good old days when the airways were aural using the radio range and landing limits were not complex, 400 and 1 for range approaches or NDB's and 200 and a half for an ILS.

Aahhh those were the days.....of course we had to be able to read morse code to get an instrument rating so it was not completely without some effort being a pilot.

Satisfaction was finding the cone of silence. :smt040
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by Check Pilot »

Actually Cat, in my day ILS approach limits used to be 300 and 1 for approaches because they were kind of new then and unproven as to the reliability of the accuracy. That was up to the early to mid 1980's. It was the same everyone used for take-offs.

Have you forgotten those days? 200 and a half for approaches was CAT II in those days. I remember talking to the "Rangers" on those dit/dah sides in IMC too.

Contrary to your opinion, satisfaction in finding the cone of silence was done by only muffled sounds from one of the airport groupies treating one of the pilot types to a "treat". How soon you have forgotten.

Your age is sneaking up on you. :wink:
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by Check Pilot »

Now that I took a fun poke at Cat, I'll tell the story of the 1/2 mile taxi vis issue. I was one of the guys that finally had enough of it. Every time we got a runway incursion involving a Commercial Operator, we had to provide and explanation as to why it happened.

It also drove one of our Aerodromes guys nuts as well, because he got the same questions as well. He not only had to deal with the Commercial Operators but the private pilots and the dumb ass airport maintenance twits that couldn't either hear and understand the radio or were too stupid to realize that low visibility meant that the FSS or ATC guy couldn't see them screw upon the runway or taxiway. This lunacy went as far as to include some of the Airport Managers and the duty Managers that, of all folks should have known better that anyone else, to allow a runway incursion.

In other words, it drove both of us nuts dealing with both idiot pilots but the ground guys as well.

Our bosses hated it too, but all they did was pass it on up the system until it finally wound up a long time later at the TSB, who kept going on about stopping it.

The nagging from TSB didn't seem to matter to TC Management very much however, so we just kept having to repeat the same crap up the system for what seemed like forever. I got sick and tired of it because I had a lot of better ways to spend my time, like taking care of the Operators that I was assigned to as the POI. Finally the lowly aerodromes Inspector approached me and said he had had enough of it and asked if we might come up with something the might stop this stupid waste of time.

We sat down and reviewed the rules that we both knew had been in effect since Christ was Cowboy, but had never been enforced and we then cooked up a deal that should stop the lunatic requests for a useless report every time we got some kind of runway incursion in reduced visibility.

The next stupid runway incursion we ran across, we both submitted reports outlining the violations that took place, IN DETAIL, to our bosses with copies to every enforcement agency in the country including the RCMP and a number of Municipal police agencies, so there was no doubt about just who was busting the regulations. It became apparent VERY quickly that this stuff went to the higher ups in Ottawa.

The next day draft AC's were circulated and fairly soon later it was made public.

I know I'm going to get shit upon for doing what I did because it means money out of Operators pockets when they can't legally do their aviation business at any time of their choosing. The rules however, are the rules which had been in place for a long time. Both TC and the Operators knew they were sitting there in the background, but sooner or later it finally got to me, for one and our illustrious aerodrome Inspector for another.

So it all finally boils down to getting a couple of lowly grunt level Inspectors pissed off ultimately by airport operators, pilots and Navcan folks making for CADORS reports hitting our desks and having about enough of the crap.

I know pilots are going to bitch about it all too because it seems so apparently stupid, as someone said earlier,

"I find it absolutely ridicules that something we have been doing for years is now deemed unsafe because some airports haven't done the paperwork to allow us to taxi in with less than 1/2 mile!"

It wasn't the case of the airport not having done the paperwork either because paperwork doesn't help out in RVOP/LVOP weather, it's because they don't see the reason to use their AIF's to improve airside operations instead of building TAJ Mahal's to try and get more passengers to justify their further AIF fee increases. What it really takes is the foresight of the airport operator to go out and spend money on the runway and taxiway lighting systems, including CAT II and III landing systems.

Will any airport operators do it? Probably not when the billion dollar terminal buildings are more important than operations. When passengers complain about delays by airlines, the airport operators merely say that it's an airline issue and has nothing to do with them. Of course they are correct, because those operators just won't spend the revenue to improve the operations for the airlines and the pilots that have to get in and out whenever they can.

As for the poor pilot seeing the vis go for crap while enroute to a destination, it sure doesn't help him, does it? Perhaps pilots and Air Operators need to put more pressure on the Airport Operators whenever they can.

In the meantime take a big dump on me for making a pilot's life miserable for stopping approaches in crappy weather.
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by Check Pilot »

Holy crap,

While I was typing, this thing and and a bunch of comments quickly showed up about LVOP/RVOP.

viewtopic.php?f=54&t=59493

ODA - do you have any comment now? Safe for years is it? Tell me how it's been so safe for years now.
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by 4hrstovegas »

Brantford, the point is about different rules are being applied by different airports for different people. Our company doesn't conduct approaches below 1/2 mile in any case. Please take 5 seconds to read the post again.
TC is confused, airports are confused, NAV CAN is confused, airline OPS managers are confused, Pilots are confused! Anyone else?
THIS is the point. Thanks CCR.
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by Flaps 1 »

for us, it's quite simple. When doing an approach in low vis, all we have to do is pull out the company memo that directs us to the flight release to the airport of lintended landing to find if it supports LVO or RVO then to the flow chart to determine the type of approach (precision or non-precision) that directs us to the company jeppesson for the correct table, 1 or 2, to determine the approach ban. It's very quite simple... :shock:
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by ODA »

Check Pilot, you are correct there have been many accidents over the years because of low vis and I think most major proffesional airlines in canada have recongised this and adapted their SOP's in an attempt to reduce the risk involved in low vis take-off and landings. However in the neck of the woods where I fly the only thing keeping us from continueing to operate as per normal is some modifications to runway lights, back-up generators and the required paperwork. I'm not sure how this would have helped that Delta flight the other night! I think the airline I work for has done a bang up job of dealing with low vis, but I can't say the same for the airports we operate out of!
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by BLZD1 »

I wish Transport would get there heads out of their ass and make rules easy to understand.

In the USA pilots look at their approach chart vis to see if they can shoot an approach and land. Here in Canada we look at the approach chart to get the suggested vis requirement then use some sliding math scale. Then we have to figure out this new taxi ban plus deal with airports like Edmonton that are considered to be two different airports when the vis is low. This is complete BS!! Just tell us if you land on runway 24 cat 1 you need xxxx vis/rvr if all runway lights are working or you need this xxxx vis/rvr when certain lights are u/s like they do in the states. If the airport is not up to transport canada requirements put out a simple Notam stating to land and taxi at this airport you need xxxx vis rvr all runways.

I just think I should be able to look at an approach chart and without thinking, see my limits with no confusion.

Flame away!!!!!!
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by Check Pilot »

A couple of comments for BLZD1.

If you want to take the time to have a look at the CFS, all the runways are listed as to what they can accommodate in LVOP/RVOP operations.

Further - NOTAMS are issued regarding low vis ops for any particular airport all the time.

If you do not have the time to check either of those, you may be in a bit too much of a hurry to get the job done safely. If you want all the various limits on an approach chart it would be 2 or 3 pages long.

At least the Canadian charts are simple to read, but it is expected that you are able to do your own interpretations by using a bit of knowledge and brain power. If there is a lack of will to go and check the status of day to day and hour by hour conditions it indicates that you may need some remedial training regarding CRM/PDM.

I agree that it would be a lot easier if the charts just said the limits are a particular ceiling and vis or you can't do an approach or land or take off. If that was the case then I'd probably be seeing you on the other side complaining how stupidly rigid the rules are.

Maybe I'm misinterpreting you, but your remarks seem to be a lot of whining by a pilot too lazy (and maybe becoming too complacent) to be in the air without a bit of line checking.
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by turbo-prop »

If the visibility at an airport is less than 1/2 mile and there is no RVOP you cannot do the approach and land. Unless you are inside of the FAF when you received the weather or have intercepted the inbound if there is no FAF. One thing to remember is the visibility rule is a ground limitation. The problem isn't so much you can't do the approach, it is more you are in violation once you are on the manuevering surface of the airport. Hence why you can't do the approach. The RVR value is for the whole airport, so if the RVR for one runway is 1000 and another runway on the field is 2800 you still can't land because somewhere on the airport manuevering area the visibility is below the airport limit.
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by Vortex_driver »

ok so... if it's reported 3/8SM (I guess no RVR, or the RVR is less than 2600) and no RVOP at the airport...

You can get your clearance to shoot the approach(your complying with approach ban), but you are NOT allowed to land (your not complying with Aerodrome operating restriction-Visibility)...


But... once you get over the airport above 1000ft, you can call and say that there is a localized phenomemon, that you can see the runway and taxiway... Than you complete your procedure turn come back and you can land and taxi in!

ref: cap gen Aerodrome operating restrictions-Visibility (3) (e)

:wink:
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by BLZD1 »

Check Pilot,

I am not a lazy pilot!! Just read the above post to understand a lot pilots, Airports, Nav Canada and Company Management do not understand these taxi limits. As far as our approach ban, just talk to other pilots from other countries landing in Canada. I am in the trenches everyday flying and you can plainly see the confusion in the industry about all these what if regulations!!! I feel it does not need to be this hard. I am just comparing Canada to other Countries I fly into.

As far as CRM is concerned this is a big hole in the swiss cheese model.
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by Airbrake »

For Check Pilot,

I do have some issues with the rule that states that Maintenance can taxi an aircraft anywhere at the airport with no intention of taking off or landing. But we as pilots who have done RTO training ~ 140Kts in RVR 600 cannot taxi anywhere. Where is the risk higher, with the mtce person (who is trained to taxi, but I argue not to the level that the pilot is) or with the flight crew?

Or using YWG as an example. RWY 36 is 1/4Mi and RWY 31 is 1/2mi. If the reported RVR is 1200 on 31 and 36 you can taxi to RWY 36 correct? If you are taxing from the terminal you are crossing over the threshold of 31 to get to 36. Now I understand the center line lighting etc on the rwy, but this is about the taxiing. Does that make sense?
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by tintin42 »

There is a lot of confusion for us canadian pilot but immagine pilots for everywhere else. Immagine if all the countrys did there own special regulation, it would not be helping the pilots. I think it would be more dangerous. I see why TC made this rule, but they could have made it a lot simpler and a little bit less restrictive, like 1200 RVR unless there is a CAT II or III rwy, than 600RVR.
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by untucked »

Just reading a route qualification for Phoenix

Airport Operating Minimums
"It is prohibited to commence an approach where the reported visibility is below the minimums for the approach"

I find the FAA's reckless abuse of common sense frightening :?
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by dutchman »

Check Pilot

While I appreciate your candor and the openness in your posts as of late, you cannot tell me that the current confusing rules regarding LVOP/RVOP actually contribute in a positive manner to aviation safety.

As an airline pilot operating in Canada it amazes me that there can be such differences in operating procedures from airport to airport. I cannot understand why it eludes T/C to make approach bans/low visibility operating procedures simpler instead of evermore complex. Why not have a simple approach ban enforced by tower advertising on the atis that the airport is closed when visibilities drop below safe manoeuvring conditions? This way there would be a lot less confusion. For uncontrolled aerodromes publish a single approach ban criteria.

It is easy to read through charts and sliding scales when one is four hours into a duty day, but when at the end of a twelve/thirteen hour day the potential for errors and misinterpretation really increases dramatically.

Am I alone in thinking this way?
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Re: 1/2 mile taxi vis... nobody knows what is going on!

Post by Donald »

Then of course, just to muddy things further, the airport duty manager can shut things down even when you are legal:
Detail InformationUser Name: Ridley, Rod
Date: 2009/10/23
Further Action Required: No
O.P.I.: System Safety
Narrative: PLR 507, a BAe 31 operated by Northwestern Air lease, was at the threshold of Runway 33 at Yellowknife ready to depart when Tower received a call from the airport duty manager. He informed Controllers that since the weather was below 1/2 mile visibility, arrivals and departures were to stop. RVR at the time was 2,800 feet for Runway 33. Tower advised the duty manager that RVR takes priority over reported ground visibility, however, the duty manager still wished to stop departures and arrivals. PLR 507 had to taxi back to the main apron and the crew of MPE 438, a Canadian North B737, which was de-icing, was informed that they would not be permitted to depart as per the airport duty manager's wishes.
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