April 2, 2009
When a utility company erected two unlit poles under the approach path to Griffin Spalding Airport’s Runway 32 in March, Dan Gryder did what an AOPA Airport Support Network Volunteer (ASNV) should: He reported it to AOPA. The association immediately jumped into action to help resolve the issue.
That led to the removal of the poles and of the safety hazard they represented to pilots using the Georgia airport.
Pilots feared that the poles, approximately 100 feet from the runway, would soon cause a fiery crash and loss of life, Gryder said. AOPA and Airport Manager Robert Mohl agreed.
They all notified the FAA, citing the builder’s failure to follow the agency’s obstruction evaluation (OE) process that requires the study of potential air-navigation hazards before they are constructed.
“As a result of the quick action and report from Dan, the airport manager got to the bottom of the issue, found out who erected the poles, and was successful in getting the builder to remove the obstructions immediately the very next day,” said Heidi Williams, AOPA senior director of airports.
The incident demonstrates the importance of the ASN volunteer’s initiative, she added.
Tall towers have proliferated with the explosion of cellular phone and digital information usage. To find out if there are tall towers proposed near your airport, sign up for notifications from the FAA.
AOPA has a summary of the safety problem tall towers pose and of the OE process.
AOPA expressed concern in a meeting with town officials from East Hampton, New York, that restrictions proposed to curb airport noise “overwhelmingly” generated by transient commercial flights would unfairly burden traditional airport users.
The FAA on Feb. 23 issued a special airworthiness information bulletin recommending preflight inspection of Robinson R44 and R44 II main rotors.
Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK) talks about the Pilots Bill of Rights II, which includes a provision to allow private pilots to fly an aircraft with up to six seats, weighing up to 6,000 pounds, VFR or IFR, without a third class medical certificate. The bill also reforms the NOTAM system, and provides more legal protections for pilots accused of regulatory infractions.
VOLUNTEER AT AN AOPA FLY-IN NEAR YOU!
SHARE YOUR PASSION. VOLUNTEER AT AN AOPA FLY-IN. CLICK TO LEARN MORE >>>
VOLUNTEER LOCALLY AT AOPA FLY-IN! CLICK TO LEARN MORE >>>
BE A PART OF THE FLY-IN VOLUNTEER CREW! CLICK TO LEARN MORE >>>