Instead of feeling compelled to fly around charted military operations areas (MOAs) and restricted areas, soon you’ll be able to gather real-time status information in the air to determine if you can safely fly through the airspace.
The Air Force and Air National Guard have worked with the FAA to provide contact frequencies for an FAA center controller, military air traffic controller, or range control officer for each MOA and restricted area so that pilots can make radio calls to see if the airspace is active, and if it is, at what altitudes.
The frequencies will appear with new charting cycles and be completed by the August cycle.
“For more than a decade, AOPA has been advocating that the military and FAA work together to chart these frequencies,” said Pete Lehmann, manager of air traffic services. “This is a move in the right direction to allow all pilots to access real-time data regarding the status of special-use airspace.”
Often, when MOAs are active, the military is using a higher floor than what is printed on the chart. In these cases, pilots can find out the floor and decide whether they can safely fly under it.
Some contact frequencies will be printed adjacent to the special-use airspace on the sectional chart, while others will appear on the side tab of the chart or along the bottom in the special-use airspace table.
For more information on special-use airspace, take the AOPA Air Safety Foundation’s Know Before You Go online course.