Air Traffic Control Zone Change
As mentioned in the presidents November 2016 bulletin report, the Hamilton Airport Air Traffic Control Zone boundaries have now changed. These boundary changes came into affect from Thursday 10th Nov and will have a direct affect on HMAC activities.
The requirement for members to phone the Control Tower prior to and on completion of flying activities has now ceased (as from 10th Nov). The signage on the field will be removed in due course.
Important issues to note that arise as a result of the boundary change:
- Full size aircraft will no longer be notified of our flying activity.
- Full size aircraft were usually over 1000ft passing over our field, this is no longer controlled by ATC and they may be lower.
- Full size aircraft can pass over our field as low as 500ft. This means that the separation between our model flying ceiling of 400ft and full size is only 100ft.
- Aircraft can now approach us from any direction (previously this was predominantly an east/west traffic pattern)
So what does this mean for us:
- The role of the observer will be far more critical in both identifying incoming aircraft and relaying information about it’s height and track.
- Our maximum 400 ft height limit will be closely monitored and must be strictly adhered to by all fliers.
- Pilots must have current wings badge (and for the model type they are flying) or be under supervision of a wings badge holder.
Note: Altitude recorders and live altitude telemetry systems are options available to assist learning to effectively estimate how high 400ft looks like.
Those are the key points, remember to play it safe and fly low or land whenever full size aircraft are in the area, we don’t want any accidents!