November 11, 2009
AOPA jumped in to keep people flying in the Washington, D.C., Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ) this week. There are special procedures (filing a flight plan and obtaining a discrete transponder code) for traffic pattern operations at airports inside the ADIZ. That allows training operations within the ADIZ. But when the FAA issued the ADIZ transponder notam Friday, some in the bureaucracy interpreted it as also banning closed traffic pattern operations and low-level flight in the ADIZ. Pilots and flight instructors calling flight service were told they couldn't do what had previously been allowed. They called AOPA, and AOPA President Phil Boyer went to the top. He called Russ Chew, head of the FAA's new Air Traffic Organization, and got it fixed.
"We continue to work on the larger issue of making the ADIZ more operationally sound for both pilots and controllers," said AOPA President Phil Boyer, "but thanks to our ongoing work with the FAA, we can get these kinds of 'glitches' solved quickly for our members."
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AOPA thanks our members for their continued support in protecting the freedom to fly.