Monday, January 21, 2008
NOTAMs by Computer
The plethora of NOTAMs has been cited by industry safety experts as a hazard as pilots are bombarded with more NOTAMs and expired NOTAMs are not purged from the system. The confusion could mean pilots will not see an important NOTAM related to the flight.
Part of changes scheduled for the NextGen Air Traffic Control System, the NOTAM realignment takes place over the next few years and is aimed at simplifying NOTAM entry, accuracy and distribution. This month the FAA harmonizes the Distant “D” NOTAM criteria with the ICAO NOTAM criteria. The National Business Aircraft Association said the change “will enhance NOTAM interpretation and will provide meaningful information as well as improved reliability and accessibility.” It noted there will be 12 specific "keywords" used in NOTAMs and without them, the NOTAM will not be published. The keywords allow pilots to customize automatic programs to their area of interest.
“Two changes will be immediate and will impact everyone,” said NBAA. “First, the FAA is adopting the ICAO definition for aerodrome movement area, expanding the definition of ‘D’ NOTAMs. Secondly, as a result of the expanded definition of ‘D’ NOTAMS (which will now include taxiways, ramps, aprons and lighting), all current Local ‘L’ NOTAMs (Civil ‘L’ NOTAMs only, not military) will become ‘D’ NOTAMs.”