'Sequestered': FAA to Close 149 Airport Towers

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Travel' started by NYCUA1K, Mar 23, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    The Federal Aviation Administration said Friday that it would shutter 149 airport control towers early next month, including six in Maryland and Virginia. The announcement, which affects mostly small airports, follows the mandatory federal spending cuts that went into effect earlier this month. Read more...
     
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  2. wombat18
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    wombat18 Silver Member

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    Didn't most of these small airports operate for years without traffic control towers?
     
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  3. Richard Chen
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    Richard Chen Silver Member

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    Many of them were indeed uncontrolled for years, though I've not enough knowledge to know how that'll affect practical operations.

    Either watch, the ridiculous politics go on as the very same conservatives who wanted the sequester work to get their own airports staffed are revolting. I'll have to place my confidence in the FAA to keep the aviation system humming, sequester & all.
     
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  4. jbcarioca
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    jbcarioca Gold Member

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    Many of them were not controlled, that is true. Many that are closing are not full time towers anyway.

    However, a fair number are in quite sensitive positions.FUL, OXR, WHP and a couple of others lie under the hugely busy Los Angeles basin and interact with LAX, LGB, ONT and SNA traffic. I taught airplane pilots to fly there for soem years. losing those towers makes some hazard, IMO. FDK, BAK and TTN are examples of ones that are not gigantic but feed traffic into very densely traveled areas, and have heavy traffic themselves at times.

    It seems to me the FAA has an impossible task. Given the incomprehensible callous disregard of fiscal sanity in Congress this seems to be among the lesser stupidities forced on the US government.
     
  5. boondr

    boondr Gold Member

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    FDK just opened so not a big deal from an adjacent facility standpoint, if any facility was a mortal lock to get shut down it was that one. From the political backup standpoint, the FAA needs AOPA to fight this battle with them with extra incentive. MTN is the one that will create safety issues as they sit under the BWI Class Bravo airspace in the main descent corridor for their traffic.

    There are so many ATC facilities (think of a major airport and most likely they and/or their radar facility are one) who were already on 6 work weeks with mandatory overtime due to staffing shortages, these furloughs are going to create a bad situation where traffic will have to be metered (read delays) to prevent unsafe sector overloads because of reduced staffing. Fewer people, means fewer ATC positions manned, which translates to more aircraft per position which can be unsafe.
     
  6. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    Airports Sue Over Tower Cuts
    By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
    Published: March 29, 2013
    Five airports have mounted a legal challenge to the Federal Aviation Administration’s decision to close 149 air traffic control towers because of federal budget cuts.[...]
     

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