There is continuing and general concern over the risk posed by flight operations occurring within the airspace of major sporting events. This concern arises from a possible scenario in which an aircraft could be used to crash into a large stadium and cause mass casualties and catastrophic damage.
Notwithstanding current restrictions, the possibility remains that any aircraft could penetrate this restricted area. Local law enforcement authorities, venue operators, and collegiate and professional sports organizations have cited this scenario as well as the apprehension produced when an airplane approaches or overflies a stadium. Moreover, Homeland Security Director Ridge has announced alert level ORANGE. This level suggests a high risk of terrorist attacks. Among recommended actions, persons are advised to take additional precaution at public events.
Operators are advised that the previous flight restriction specified in FDC Notam 1/3353 is intended to address major sports events and large public assemblies within the U.S. This notam establishes a radius of three nautical miles out from any major sporting venue from the surface up to 3,000 feet.
Effective September 11, 2002, no flights will be permitted to operate in the restricted area specified in this notam. Waivers of this restriction granted by the FAA and TSA are no longer valid.
It may be too early to predict when current restrictions may be relaxed, if at all. TSA staff will be scheduling a listening session for operators who are affected by this security announcement. It is anticipated that this session will assist security planners and operators in formulating and implementing future aviation security measures above major sports venues. Notice of the date and location of this session will be announced.
The TSA waiver information number is 202/267-9425. Please call this number if you have any further questions.
September 11, 2002