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AOPA urges FAA to eliminate Seattle-area TFRsAOPA urges FAA to eliminate Seattle-area TFRs

Attn: Mr. Jeff Griffith, AAT-2
Deputy Director, Air Traffic Services
Federal Aviation Administration
800 Independence Ave., S.W.
Washington DC, 20591

Dear Mr. Griffith:

The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA), representing the interests of over 380,000 aviation enthusiasts and professionals nationwide, requests that your office take action to cancel FDC Notams 1/0449, 1/0451, 1/1812, and 1/0447 impacting the state of Washington. These four notams establish temporary flight restrictions (TFRs) throughout the Puget Sound region. Although AOPA realizes that national security is now a major element of airspace management, similar restrictions have been lifted in other areas. Unfortunately, law-abiding pilots are forced to contend with additional impediments to their safe and efficient use of the National Airspace System in the Puget Sound area. AOPA respectfully asks that the FAA eliminate these four TFRs as soon as possible.

These TFR restrictions have resulted in the following impact to the general aviation community:

  • Impact to V165, V287, and V4;
  • Impact to VFR arrivals/departures from/to north of Snohomish County Airport;
  • Impact to VFR arrivals/departures from/to east of Jefferson County Airport;
  • Impact to VFR arrivals/departures from/to north of Apex Airport;
  • Impact to the Port of Poulsbo Seaplane Base;
  • Impact to arrivals/departures from/to northeast of Bremerton National Airport;
  • Impact to the Bremerton ILS 19 approach;
  • Impact to VFR transients throughout the region.

The numerous public and private airports in this region host well over 200,000 GA operations annually, making the cited issues worthy of your consideration.

AOPA appreciates the challenges the FAA faces in balancing the needs of all airspace users. However, the establishment of TFRs has become a convenient and all too common strategy that results in burdensome and complex airspace—subjecting operators to longer flight times, reduced access, and exposure to an increased risk of enforcement action. Therefore, the FAA should carefully scrutinize the continued use of security TFRs in the Puget Sound area. AOPA looks forward to a positive response to this request that benefits all airspace users.

Respectfully,

Melissa K. Bailey
Vice President, Air Traffic Services
Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association

Cc: Mr. Reginald Matthews, ATA-400

February 19, 2002

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