|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||1801 To 2400|
|Locale Reference||atc facility : day|
airport : 3i7
|Altitude||msl bound lower : 5500|
msl bound upper : 5500
|Controlling Facilities||tracon : day|
|Operator||general aviation : personal|
|Make Model Name||PA-28 Cherokee/Archer II/Dakota/Pillan/Warrior|
|Operating Under FAR Part||Part 91|
|Flight Phase||cruise other|
|Function||instruction : instructor|
|Qualification||pilot : cfi|
pilot : commercial
pilot : instrument
|Experience||flight time last 90 days : 160|
flight time total : 1300
flight time type : 720
|Function||instruction : trainee|
|Qualification||pilot : student|
|Anomaly||non adherence : far|
non adherence : clearance
other anomaly other
|Independent Detector||other other : unspecified cockpit|
|Resolutory Action||none taken : anomaly accepted|
|Air Traffic Incident||Pilot Deviation|
Primary student and I departed 3i7, a non twred airport, approximately 7 mi west of day's class C airport, into foggy/hazy conditions below a 1200 ft AGL scattered layer. We proceeded ssw at approximately 1700 ft MSL, passing north of I6Z, and turned wbound to pass clear of the overlying day class C airspace outer circle which began at 2400 ft MSL and tops out at 5000 ft MSL. After passing west of verona, a little town approximately 15 mi west of day, we found a large hole in the clouds and climbed above the layer, which topped at 3000 ft MSL. Once well on top, and still in VFR/VMC, we began normal VFR flight maneuvers. However, the undercast became more widespread and maintaining positional awareness by ground reference became increasingly difficult. So, I called day approach and told them our location approximately 2 mi west of their airspace at 5500 ft MSL and discussed our intention to continue VFR maneuvers in that general vicinity. Day approach gave us a transponder code and placed our flight in radar contact with no restrs on route of flight or altitude to maintain. Eventually we descended below the cloud layer for a return to 3i7. At the time of our descent, we were well west of day class C boundaries, but we did request a vector back to 3i7 and the 090 degree heading matched our estimate. Radar service was terminated when we reported 3i7 in sight. As usual, day had been very helpful and congenial. In the future, I probably would not depart with the intention of climbing VFR above an undercast that had that much widespread coverage with less than good visibility. While we did maintain VFR/VMC, it was not very comfortable below the cloud deck, and given our close proximity to the western edge of day class C, I should have called day approach sooner as the undercast became more widespread. Another contributing factor was the fact that this student's aircraft had been down for maintenance several times recently causing scheduling problems, and the WX had also been the cause of many recent cancellations. The student was becoming frustrated, so I made every attempt to conduct a safe VFR flight in marginal conditions on this evening. If I had it to do over again, I would simply reschedule for a better WX day.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: THE FLT INSTRUCTOR BELIEVES THERE IS A POSSIBILITY HE ENTERED CLASS C AIRSPACE WITHOUT ESTABLISHING CONTACT WITH DAY APCH. HE TOOK A STUDENT FLYING WHEN THE VISIBILITY WAS MARGINAL BECAUSE THE STUDENT WAS GETTING DISCOURAGED OVER THE LONG ABSENCE FROM FLYING. PA28-180.
Narrative: PRIMARY STUDENT AND I DEPARTED 3I7, A NON TWRED ARPT, APPROX 7 MI W OF DAY'S CLASS C ARPT, INTO FOGGY/HAZY CONDITIONS BELOW A 1200 FT AGL SCATTERED LAYER. WE PROCEEDED SSW AT APPROX 1700 FT MSL, PASSING N OF I6Z, AND TURNED WBOUND TO PASS CLR OF THE OVERLYING DAY CLASS C AIRSPACE OUTER CIRCLE WHICH BEGAN AT 2400 FT MSL AND TOPS OUT AT 5000 FT MSL. AFTER PASSING W OF VERONA, A LITTLE TOWN APPROX 15 MI W OF DAY, WE FOUND A LARGE HOLE IN THE CLOUDS AND CLBED ABOVE THE LAYER, WHICH TOPPED AT 3000 FT MSL. ONCE WELL ON TOP, AND STILL IN VFR/VMC, WE BEGAN NORMAL VFR FLT MANEUVERS. HOWEVER, THE UNDERCAST BECAME MORE WIDESPREAD AND MAINTAINING POSITIONAL AWARENESS BY GND REF BECAME INCREASINGLY DIFFICULT. SO, I CALLED DAY APCH AND TOLD THEM OUR LOCATION APPROX 2 MI W OF THEIR AIRSPACE AT 5500 FT MSL AND DISCUSSED OUR INTENTION TO CONTINUE VFR MANEUVERS IN THAT GENERAL VICINITY. DAY APCH GAVE US A XPONDER CODE AND PLACED OUR FLT IN RADAR CONTACT WITH NO RESTRS ON RTE OF FLT OR ALT TO MAINTAIN. EVENTUALLY WE DSNDED BELOW THE CLOUD LAYER FOR A RETURN TO 3I7. AT THE TIME OF OUR DSCNT, WE WERE WELL W OF DAY CLASS C BOUNDARIES, BUT WE DID REQUEST A VECTOR BACK TO 3I7 AND THE 090 DEG HDG MATCHED OUR ESTIMATE. RADAR SVC WAS TERMINATED WHEN WE RPTED 3I7 IN SIGHT. AS USUAL, DAY HAD BEEN VERY HELPFUL AND CONGENIAL. IN THE FUTURE, I PROBABLY WOULD NOT DEPART WITH THE INTENTION OF CLBING VFR ABOVE AN UNDERCAST THAT HAD THAT MUCH WIDESPREAD COVERAGE WITH LESS THAN GOOD VISIBILITY. WHILE WE DID MAINTAIN VFR/VMC, IT WAS NOT VERY COMFORTABLE BELOW THE CLOUD DECK, AND GIVEN OUR CLOSE PROX TO THE WESTERN EDGE OF DAY CLASS C, I SHOULD HAVE CALLED DAY APCH SOONER AS THE UNDERCAST BECAME MORE WIDESPREAD. ANOTHER CONTRIBUTING FACTOR WAS THE FACT THAT THIS STUDENT'S ACFT HAD BEEN DOWN FOR MAINT SEVERAL TIMES RECENTLY CAUSING SCHEDULING PROBS, AND THE WX HAD ALSO BEEN THE CAUSE OF MANY RECENT CANCELLATIONS. THE STUDENT WAS BECOMING FRUSTRATED, SO I MADE EVERY ATTEMPT TO CONDUCT A SAFE VFR FLT IN MARGINAL CONDITIONS ON THIS EVENING. IF I HAD IT TO DO OVER AGAIN, I WOULD SIMPLY RESCHEDULE FOR A BETTER WX DAY.
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.