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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation A-81-168
Details
Synopsis: ON APRIL 17, 1981, AIR U.S. 716, HP-137 (JETSTREAM), AND SKY'S WEST PARACHUTE CENTER'S CESSNA TU-206 COLLIDED IN MIDAIR AT 13,000 FEET M.S.L. NEAR THE FT. COLLINS/ LOVELAND AIRPORT, LOVELAND, COLORADO (SEE AIRCRAFT ACCIDENT REPORT NTSB-AAR-81-18). THE MIDAIR COLLISION ILLUSTRATES CERTAIN SAFETY BOARD CONCERNS RELATED TO AIR TRAFFIC CONTROL PROCEDURES AND EXISTING REGULATIONS WITH RESPECT TO PARACHUTE JUMP OPERATIONS.
Recommendation: THE NTSB RECOMMENDS THAT THE FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION: AMEND 14 CFR 105 TO REQUIRE THAT THE PILOT OF A JUMP AIRCRAFT CONTACT ALL CONTROL FACILITIES HAVING JURISDICTION OF THE AIRSPACE IN WHICH THE AIRCRAFT WILL TRANSIT DURING THE OPERATION FOR THE PURPOSE OF RECEIVING TRAFFIC ADVISORIES WHILE PROCEEDING TO AND DEPARTING FROM THE LOCATION WHERE JUMPERS ARE RELEASED. THIS SHOULD BE IN ADDITION TO THE REQUIREMENT OF 104.14(A)(1)(II) FOR A 5-MINUTE NOTIFICATION BEFORE JUMP OPERATIONS ARE BEGUN.
Original recommendation transmittal letter: PDF
Overall Status: Closed - Unacceptable Action
Mode: Aviation
Location: Loveland, CO, United States
Is Reiterated: No
Is Hazmat: No
Is NPRM: No
Accident #: DCA81AA015
Accident Reports: Air U.S. Flight 716, HP-137, N11360, and Sky's West Cessna TU-206, N4862F, Midair Collision
Report #: AAR-81-18
Accident Date: 4/17/1981
Issue Date: 1/25/1982
Date Closed: 11/29/1983
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: FAA (Closed - Unacceptable Action)
Keyword(s):

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 11/29/1983
Response: The Board continues to believe that a jump aircraft is predominately unique in its "spiral-up" and "spiral-down" flight path, and that a requirement that a pilot of such an aircraft request traffic advisories would serve to enhance safety. The Board notes that, because of its efforts, the United States Parachute Association has encouraged its members to request traffic advisories climbing and descending from the "drop point." Because of the position the FAA has taken regarding this recommendation, and our lack of success in persuading FAA to modify its position in correspondence dated July 1982, and April 1983, Safety Recommendation A-81-168 has been classified as "Closed--Unacceptable Action."

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 6/2/1983
Response: FAA LETTER: THE AIRMAN'S INFORMATION MANUAL (AIM) CLEARLY DEFINES ALL OF THE ATC SERVICES AVAILABLE TO VFR PILOTS. PILOTS REQUEST THOSE SERVICES WHICH ARE PERTINENT TO THEIR UNIQUE FLIGHT ENVIRONMENT WHEN THEY CONSIDER IT NECESSARY. THE AIM CLEARLY STATES THAT CERTAIN SERVICES ARE AVAILABLE TO PILOTS, AND WE BELIEVE THAT ANY DECISION REGARDING REQUESTS FOR ANY OF THOSE SERVICES MUST REMAIN A PILOT-IN COMMAND (PIC) PREROGATIVE. THEREFORE, WE DO NOT BELIVE THAT "ENCOURAGING" PILOTS TO AVAIL THEMSELVES OF ANY OF THE SERVICES WILL EITHER CHANGE PILOT ATTITUDES OR PARTICIPATION. SIMPLY STATED, THE PIC OF A JUMP AIRCRAFT WILL TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THE RADAR TRAFFIC ADVISORY SERVICE WHEN HE/SHE CONSIDERS IT NECESSARY REGARDLESS OF WHETHER WE "ENCOURAGE" THE PIC TO DO SO.

From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 4/13/1983
Response: You have stated that the concept of requiring a particular user class to request and FAA to provide VFR traffic advisories is "untenable in the ATC system." Nevertheless, we continue to believe that the unique nature of such jump operations justifies special treatment. Since you have stated that you plan no further action on this regulatory recommendation, we urge, as an alternate measure, that you encourage pilots of jump aircraft to request such advisories. Pending further response, we will classify this recommendation as "Open--Unacceptable Action."

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 10/4/1982
Response: FAA LETTER: THE FAA DOES NOT CONCUR IN THIS RECOMMENDATION. SINCE A JUMP AIRCRAFT PROCEEDING TO OR FROM THE JUMP ZONE UNDER VFR IS NOTHING MORE THAN ANOTHER VFR AIRCRAFT IN THE SYSTEM, WE DO NOT AGREE THAT THERE IS ANY NEED FOR SPECIAL HANDLING. WE CONTEND THAT ANY TURNS A JUMP AIRCRAFT MAKES ARE MORE LIKELY TO ENHANCE RATHER THAN RESTRICT VISIBILITY BY DISPLACING BLIND SPOTS WHICH WOULD OTHERWISE REMAIN IN FIXED POSITIONS IN A STRAIGHT AHEAD CLIMB OR DESCENT. THESE MANEUVERS COULD BE COMPARED TO "CLEARING TURNS" PILOTS ARE TRAINED TO EXECUTE PRIOR TO ACCOMPLISHING CERTAIN KINDS OF AIR WORK. ANOTHER FACTOR TO CONSIDER IS THE NTSB REFERENCE TO RECENT NASA STUDY ON NEAR MIDAIR COLLISIONS WHICH INDICATES THAT PILOTS TEND TO BECOME COMPLACENT AND RELAX THEIR VISUAL SCAN WHEN THEY ARE RECEIVING RADAR TRAFFIC ADVISORIES. THE REPORT CONCLUDES THAT "...PILOTS MUST EXERCISE THE HIGHEST LEVEL OF VIGILANCE FOR OTHER TRAFFIC, REGARDLESS OF AIRSPACE OR RADAR SERVICES BEING UTILIZED." SINCE THE NTSB PROPOSAL WOULD APPEAR TO MANDATE TRAFFIC ADVISORIES SELECTIVELY FOR JUMP AIRCRAFT, IT WOULD ESTABLISH AN ERRONEOUS USER EXPECTATION THAT ALL TRAFFIC WOULD BE ISSUED AT ALL TIMES. EVEN THOUGH WE CAREFULLY WORDED THE RULE TO AVOID THE MANDATORY ASPECT, IT WOULD UNDOUTEDLY INCREASE THE TENDENCY TO BECOME COMPLACENT WHEN PILOTS ARE OPERATING IN AN ENVIRONMENT WHERE THEY EXPECT TO RECEIVE TRAFFIC ADVISORIES.

From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 7/8/1982
Response: There is a decided difference between "clearing turns," as described in your letter, and the "ground-scanning turns" over a planned jump areas, as described in our letter. Our recommendation also did not involve any "special handling" by ATC since any VFR pilot can contact a control facility and request traffic advisories. Our proposed action did recognize, however, the unique spiral-up, spiral-down nature of parachute-jumping operations with the associated greater potential for traffic conflict. As a consequence, we concluded that it would be in the best interests of safety if such jump aircraft were required to request advisory service. In this connection, we note that the United States Parachute Association, in response to our recommendation, has encouraged their members to obtain such advisory service. We Data Source: NTSB Recommendations to FAA and FAA Responses continue to believe that appropriate modification for 14 CFR 105 is warranted and will classify this recommendation as "Open--Unacceptable Action." Your further consideration and response would be appreciated,

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 4/27/1982
Response: FAA LTR: THE FAA DOES NOT CONCUR IN THIS RECOMMENDATION. SINCE A JUMP AIRCRAFT PROCEEDING TO OR FROM THE JUMP ZONE UNDER VFR IS NOTHING MORE THAN ANOTHER VFR AIRCRAFT IN THE SYSTEM, WE DO NOT AGREE THAT THERE IS ANY NEED FOR SPECIAL HANDLING.