Air Force proposes to release some SUA

September 3, 2006

Air Force proposes to release some SUA
AOPA says Southern California effort should be expanded nationally

Special-use airspace - could it shrink as technology and military training strategies become more advanced?

AOPA continually seeks ways to protect airspace and regain sections of the National Airspace System that have been taken away. And that's why the association sees a broader positive benefit for general aviation in the Air Force's proposal to release some special-use airspace (SUA) from the Silver Military Operations Area (MOA) in Southern California.

"As training tactics and equipment continue to evolve, we encourage the Air Force to take a broad look at their current SUA assets and release those that are no longer needed, as is the case with the Silver MOA," AOPA said this week in its comments on the proposal.

The airspace release in Southern California would allow unhampered access to three Victor airways that serve as the primary route for GA pilots flying between the Los Angeles Basin and all points to the northeast.

Airspace around Baker Airport in Baker, California, would be less constrained. Pilots would be able to operate at and around the airport without penetrating the MOA, which would increase safety for GA and military pilots.

"AOPA is pleased that the Air Force is taking the initiative to accommodate GA," said Heidi Williams, AOPA director of air traffic services. "This is something the military should consider doing with all of its SUA where possible."

March 9, 2006