May 11, 2011
By Dan Namowitz
Pilots will have to use alternative procedures to check notices to airmen (notams) for several hours on May 28 when the FAA notam servers are taken off-line during a relocation of the system’s operations base.
On May 28, the FAA will reposition the servers that run the notam system from Herndon, Va., to FAA facilities in Oklahoma City, Okla., in a changeover associated with the move of the FAA’s air traffic command center to Warrenton, Va. The servers will be unable to upload any new notam information for several hours during the switch, the FAA said.
AOPA and industry representatives have met weekly with the FAA to develop ways of limiting the impact of the planned outage on general aviation and system users.
From 0600Z to 1030Z on May 28, pilots should contact flight service (800/WX-BRIEF). Briefers will have access to all notam information.
There will also be two websites that should be checked for a full picture of notams for a flight: A site hosted by Lockheed Martin will provide D notams. An FAA site will provide FDC notams, including temporary flight restrictions (TFRs). Each website will contain a link to the other for easy navigation.
Alaska notams will be available only from Alaska Flight Service specialists.
Dan Namowitz is an aviation writer and flight instructor. He has been a pilot since 1985 and an instructor since 1990.
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