|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||1801 To 2400|
|Locale Reference||atc facility : mcn|
|Altitude||msl bound lower : 2200|
msl bound upper : 4500
|Controlling Facilities||tracon : mcn|
|Operator||general aviation : instructional|
|Make Model Name||Small Aircraft, High Wing, 1 Eng, Fixed Gear|
|Flight Phase||descent : approach|
|Route In Use||enroute : on vectors|
|Function||flight crew : single pilot|
|Qualification||pilot : private|
|Experience||flight time last 90 days : 110|
flight time total : 200
flight time type : 175
|Affiliation||government : faa|
|Function||controller : approach|
|Qualification||controller : radar|
|Anomaly||altitude deviation : undershoot|
non adherence : clearance
|Independent Detector||other flight crewa|
|Resolutory Action||flight crew : returned to intended course or assigned course|
|Consequence||faa : reviewed incident with flight crew|
|Primary Problem||Flight Crew Human Performance|
|Air Traffic Incident||Pilot Deviation|
I was about 15 mi northeast of mcn when I decided to go for a localizer approach into that airport. After establishing 2-WAY radio communications with mcn approach control I was assigned a transponder code that I dialed immediately. During my initial callup I forgot to give information about my altitude which was 4500' MSL at that time. So, about 2 mins later the controller advised me that he had negative radar contact, gave me the same transponder code once more and asked for my altitude. I verified the transponder code and gave him a wrong altitude information of 3500' MSL, misreading the altimeter. Obviously the controller still had not been able to identify my aircraft on the screen because I was advised to change my heading for radar identify ('fly heading 270, maintain 3500', maintain VFR'). I did that but of course maintained 4500' instead of 3500'. The controller came back, confirming radar contact and asking for my intentions. After I told him I wanted the localizer 5 approach. I was assigned an altitude of 2200' and a heading of 280 degrees. I read the #south back correctly, but in the opinion I was at 3500', I only descended to 3200', thinking I was already at 2200'. In other words, I was exactly 1000' too high. About 3 mins later, I had to confirm my altitude of 2200' when I discovered I was at 3200'. I quickly told the controller, 'correction, level at 3200'.' again I was assigned to descend to 2200' where I finally descended to. As an INS student pilot, I'm aware that misreading the altimeter could have meant life and death even in VMC. That was my mistake resulting in a violation. On the other hand, the controller could have noticed in the first stage that my reported altitude did not coincide with the transponder readout after radar contact had been established. Callback conversation with reporter revealed the following: reporter states there has been no follow up on this incident. He did not identify this as a practice approach. He has completed training and acquired his rating.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: INSTRUMENT STUDENT MISREADS ALTIMETER ON PRACTICE APCH. 1000' ALT DEVIATION.
Narrative: I WAS ABOUT 15 MI NE OF MCN WHEN I DECIDED TO GO FOR A LOC APCH INTO THAT ARPT. AFTER ESTABLISHING 2-WAY RADIO COMS WITH MCN APCH CTL I WAS ASSIGNED A XPONDER CODE THAT I DIALED IMMEDIATELY. DURING MY INITIAL CALLUP I FORGOT TO GIVE INFO ABOUT MY ALT WHICH WAS 4500' MSL AT THAT TIME. SO, ABOUT 2 MINS LATER THE CTLR ADVISED ME THAT HE HAD NEGATIVE RADAR CONTACT, GAVE ME THE SAME XPONDER CODE ONCE MORE AND ASKED FOR MY ALT. I VERIFIED THE XPONDER CODE AND GAVE HIM A WRONG ALT INFO OF 3500' MSL, MISREADING THE ALTIMETER. OBVIOUSLY THE CTLR STILL HAD NOT BEEN ABLE TO IDENT MY ACFT ON THE SCREEN BECAUSE I WAS ADVISED TO CHANGE MY HDG FOR RADAR IDENT ('FLY HDG 270, MAINTAIN 3500', MAINTAIN VFR'). I DID THAT BUT OF COURSE MAINTAINED 4500' INSTEAD OF 3500'. THE CTLR CAME BACK, CONFIRMING RADAR CONTACT AND ASKING FOR MY INTENTIONS. AFTER I TOLD HIM I WANTED THE LOC 5 APCH. I WAS ASSIGNED AN ALT OF 2200' AND A HDG OF 280 DEGS. I READ THE #S BACK CORRECTLY, BUT IN THE OPINION I WAS AT 3500', I ONLY DSNDED TO 3200', THINKING I WAS ALREADY AT 2200'. IN OTHER WORDS, I WAS EXACTLY 1000' TOO HIGH. ABOUT 3 MINS LATER, I HAD TO CONFIRM MY ALT OF 2200' WHEN I DISCOVERED I WAS AT 3200'. I QUICKLY TOLD THE CTLR, 'CORRECTION, LEVEL AT 3200'.' AGAIN I WAS ASSIGNED TO DSND TO 2200' WHERE I FINALLY DSNDED TO. AS AN INS STUDENT PLT, I'M AWARE THAT MISREADING THE ALTIMETER COULD HAVE MEANT LIFE AND DEATH EVEN IN VMC. THAT WAS MY MISTAKE RESULTING IN A VIOLATION. ON THE OTHER HAND, THE CTLR COULD HAVE NOTICED IN THE FIRST STAGE THAT MY RPTED ALT DID NOT COINCIDE WITH THE XPONDER READOUT AFTER RADAR CONTACT HAD BEEN ESTABLISHED. CALLBACK CONVERSATION WITH RPTR REVEALED THE FOLLOWING: RPTR STATES THERE HAS BEEN NO FOLLOW UP ON THIS INCIDENT. HE DID NOT IDENT THIS AS A PRACTICE APCH. HE HAS COMPLETED TRNING AND ACQUIRED HIS RATING.
Data retrieved from NASA's ASRS site as of July 2007 and automatically converted to unabbreviated mixed upper/lowercase text. This report is for informational purposes with no guarantee of accuracy. See NASA's ASRS site for official report.