A general aviation pilot based at a small airstrip faces many challenges when using larger, more complex airports. Under past practice, a ground clearance listing a series of taxi instructions—with no mention of runways crossed—might have been one of them.
To cross, or not to cross? That was a question to ponder.
Such is no longer the case: The FAA changed its policy and halted abbreviated taxi clearances long since, in keeping with NTSB recommendations. The recent change removed from the Class D airspace regulation language that had allowed controllers to omit runway crossing instructions from taxi clearances, with permission to cross any and all runways encountered along the route implied—but not stated.
The final rule was issued May 14, and remains subject to comment until June 13. Comments may be submitted online by searching for FAA Docket No. FAA–2011–1396. Those who choose to comment are encouraged to share a copy with AOPA.